New Zealand mosques are "free and welcome to open their doors", however police will maintain an armed presence.

A police spokeswoman has confirmed that the advice to stay away from mosques has been lifted.

The advice came after 49 people were killed in terrorist shootings at two Christchurch mosques on Friday afternoon.

Forty-one people were killed at the Al Noor Mosque in Deans Ave, while a further seven were shot dead at Linwood Masjid. Another victim died in hospital later.

Advertisement
The scene outside the mosque on Vermont Rd in Ponsonby on Saturday evening. Photo / Chris Loufte
The scene outside the mosque on Vermont Rd in Ponsonby on Saturday evening. Photo / Chris Loufte

The main shooter was identified as Brenton Tarrant — a white, 28-year-old Australian-born man. He has been charged with murder and is likely to face more charges.

Police Commissioner Mike Bush earlier urged people not to travel to mosques "anywhere in New Zealand", but today police confirmed this caution has been lifted.

"New Zealand's mosques are free and welcome to open their doors if they choose to do so, and police will continue to stand firm in support of them," the police spokeswoman said.

"While mosques are open, or have people in residence, police will maintain an armed presence.

"When mosques are closed, police will be in the immediate area and able to respond urgently," she said.