A man who survived the murderous rampage at the Linwood Masjid is devastated by the callous attack on his fellow worshippers.

Mazharuddin Syed Ahmed says he is grateful he's alive but shocked he has lost five friends in a "senseless frenzied attack".

"It was like a horror show. There were many kids and old people who could not move. I froze, I didn't know what to do".

Syed Ahmed hid in a small storeroom and lay down. But he could see the gunman shooting elderly men and women who were sitting near the main door and in the middle of the open room.

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One of his friends tried to tackle the gunman who finally "lost control of his gun".

/ Richard Dale
/ Richard Dale

The father-of-two watched his close friend die from multiple wounds and is relieved another friend survived after intensive surgery.

"It was horrific – he was crying for help and I was unable to do anything. He was bleeding so much but I couldn't locate the wound. His shoulder was shot and he kept saying 'please call the doctor, call the doctor'. I didn't want to leave him but I ran for help. We waited for the ambulance but I was so worried my brother was bleeding profusely that it could be fatal- but luckily he made it".

Syed Ahmed's 14 year-old daughter Huda lost her friend Sayyad Milne, also 14, on Friday.
Her mother told the Herald Sayyad had his special seat at the mosque by the main door.

"He was in one of my classes and he was an amazing boy. He had a seat he liked at the mosque, that was his place you know-he was near the entrance and he got shot. We are very close to his family to his mother, god have mercy on me but it's the good that have been taken."

While the Syed Ahmed's wife was trying to find out about Sayyad she learned her husband's friend Mohammad Imran Khan was considered missing. Her friend, sister Linda Armstong died in another friend' s arms.

"There is going to be a big hole in our lives with all our brother and sisters gone - wonderful amazing people who are likely to be dead"

The Masjiid Al Noor mosque opposite near Hagley park and the Linwood Masjiid near Phillipstown, were attacked about 1.40pm on Friday.

Fifty people have been killed and of the 50 others injured, 36 are still being treated in Christchurch Hospital.

A 28-year-old Australian man, Brenton Tarrant, has been charged with murder.

Syed Ahmed and his family left Saudi and immigrated to Christchurch five years ago to complete his PhD in engineering.

"I think New Zealanders are kind and accepting we want to thank them for their support. What has happened is unbelievable - it is not New Zealand. This is one of the only places in the world you can live freely and in peace. But I am so happy to be alive".