Grant Robertson, New Zealand sports minister said, he hopes that very soon Bangladesh’s cricketers and supporters will feel it is safe to return to New Zealand after the Christchurch shooting during New Zealand Cricket’s Awards on Thursday.
As per the reports, Robertson was quoted as, “My hope is that in time the players and supporters will feel safe enough to return to New Zealand and I know that they know that they will be welcomed with open arms.”
Robertson said that he had written to the youth and sports minister of Bangladesh and the President of the Cricket Board of the country, expressing his relief to the team that the team was safe.
Robertson further said in his letter, highlighting that “violence and hatred shown by one individual must not be allowed to destroy the friendship and respect that New Zealand and Bangladesh cricket teams and nation have long shared.”
“We cannot know your grief but we can walk alongside you at every stage of that grief, and we can show you the Aroha and the manaakitanga for which New Zealand is known and our resolve that we will find the light from this darkest day. We will be with you forever,” his speech was a message for the grieving families.
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On March 15, 2019, Christchurch mosque shooting took place in which 50 people lost their lives.
Bangladesh’s cricket team members were on their way to the Masjid Al Noor to offer their Friday prayers, the same mosque where a single gunman started shooting and the visitor team had a narrow escape.
Greg Barclay, NZ Cricket chairman conducted a moment of silence at the awards ceremony to honor the victims of the shootings.