Update: There are conflicting reports over Muhammad Rafiq’s age. While The New York Times still reports his age being 75, other outlets say he’s 65. For this article, we’ll go with the NY Times’ account unless more information becomes available.
According to Norwegian police, a white man acted alone when he carried out an attack on a mosque in Oslo, but thanks to the actions of a 75-year-old man, the attacker wasn’t able to kill any worshippers.
According to reports, Muhammad Rafiq overpowered the suspect and only sustaining light injuries as a result.
“The man carried two shotgun-like weapons and a pistol” and was wearing body armor, a helmet and black clothes, Irfan Mushtaq told Norwegian televisionTV2, according to The New York Times. “He broke through a glass door and fired shots.”
This is Muhammad Rafiq. Know his name.
Yesterday, when a white supremacist terrorist tried to carry out Christchurch-style massacre in a Norway Mosque, this 75 year old jumped on him, held him in a chokehold & sat on him till police arrived.
You don’t mess with desi uncles! pic.twitter.com/LauKW6UWAk
— Kashif N Chaudhry (@KashifMD) August 11, 2019
There were only 3 people at the mosque at the time of the attack, which could have been much worse if the attacker arrived earlier in the day during prayer services.
In the hours after the shooting, police searched an apartment linked to the suspect and found the body of a woman, who reports say was his 17-year-old stepsister.
Oslo Police say that several shots were fired, but the number of shots and the type of weapons are not yet established.”
“The fact that the aggressor entered a mosque armed and from the investigation so far has been found to have expressed hostile attitudes against immigrants has led the police to investigate this attack as an attempted act of terrorism,” the police department said in a statement.
The suspect was charged with attempted murder in relation to the mosque attack, and later charged with murder in relation to the dead woman.
Featured image via @KashifMD/Twitter