New Zealand PM targets online hate after mosque attacks

WELLINGTON (AFP) – New Zealand’s leader Jacinda Arden will demand action to curb online extremism, citing the worst mass killing in her country’s recent history at a summit of world leaders and tech firms in Paris tomorrow.

A self-described white supremacist killed 51 Muslims in the Christchurch mosque attacks on 15 March. During the assault the man wore a head-mounted camera, broadcasting his actions online.

Arden has been the driving force behind the Paris summit, co-hosted with French President Emmanuel Macron, following the tragedy.

Participants will be asked to commit to a “Christchurch Call” pledge – named after the city – designed to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online.

Ardern said the Christchurch massacre underlined “a horrifying new trend” in extremist atrocities.

“It was designed to be broadcast on the Internet. The entire event was livestreamed.. the scale of this horrific video’s reach was staggering,” she said in an opinion piece for the New York Times.

Ardern said Facebook removed 1.5 million copies of the video within 24 hours of the attack, but she still found herself among those who inadvertently saw the footage when it auto-played on their social media feeds.

Since the attack, Ardern has strongly criticised tech giants for not doing enough to combat online extremism.

Attendees at the Paris summit reportedly include heads of state or government from Britain, Canada, Ireland, Norway, Jordan, Senegal, and Indonesia.