Brain-damaged Christchurch shooting victim, five, ‘can’t speak’

A father-of-four injured in the Christchurch shootings has posted pictures of his five year-old daughter who was left brain damaged after she was also shot.

Wasseim Alsati was approaching the Al Noor mosque with Alen, his youngest daughter, when alleged gunman Brenton Tarrant walked out and shot them both.

Mr Alsati told Daily Mail Australia the attacker, who appeared to be wearing a New Zealand military uniform, pointed his weapon at his daughter’s head and shot her despite his attempts to protect her.

Pic: Wasseim Alsati
Image: Alen Aslati is surrounded by her family in hospital. Pic: Wasseim Alsati

“And then the second bullet, he shot her in the foot, in the toes. And then I got a shot in my tummy. And then I got two shots in my bum.”

Despite multiple operations, doctors at the Starship Children’s Hospital in Auckland are still unsure of the extent of Alen’s brain injuries.

Mr Alsati posted a picture of a bullet that was removed from his body. Pic: Wasseim Alsati
Image: Mr Alsati posted a picture of a bullet that was removed from his body. Pic: Wasseim Alsati

Mr Alsati, who owns a barber shop in the southern New Zealand city, shared images of his young daughter in hospital surrounded by family and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

A GiveALittle page, which has raised more than $ 47,000 (£24,000) for the family, said “Wassiem is recovering from gunshot wounds in his hip area. He is not currently walking but is expecting to walk again when fully recovered.

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Alen Alsati. Pic: Wasseim Alsati
Image: Alen Alsati was left brain damaged in the atrocity. Pic: Wasseim Alsati

“Alen has suffered damage to the brain, she is making daily progress, but at this stage she cannot speak or see people. She has begun so say the odd word and recognises her mother’s voice.”

It asks for donations “for supporting the family in future if Wassiem is out of work, or if they have to pay money for on-going nursing and medical care for Alen”.

Mr Alsati with his daughter Alen. Pic: Wasseim Alsati
Image: Mr Alsati with his daughter Alen. Pic: Wasseim Alsati

Tarrant, a 28-year-old Australian, has been charged with 50 counts of murder after last month’s terror attack.

A month on from the massacre, Mr Alsati, a Muslim, said: “I don’t feel anything about him shooting me, I am really angry that he shot my daughter.”

Jacinda Ardern waves as she leaves the vigil and prayers
Image: New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern waves as she leaves the vigil and prayers

“I understand the hate against Islam, Muslims. But that doesn’t give anybody the right to shoot kids.”

Brenton Tarrant, charged for murder in relation to the mosque attacks, is seen in the dock during his appearance in the Christchurch District Court, New Zealand March 16, 2019.
Image: Brenton Tarrant in the dock as he was charged with murder

In a video posted on Facebook, Mr Alsati said it will be “six months to know how bad the damage [to his daughter Alen] is”.

Speaking from his hospital bed, he broke down as he said: “My daughter woke up and she doesn’t know us and she can’t see us and hear us at all. I don’t know if she is cold or warm.

A woman views flowers and tributes by the wall of the botanic gardens on March 24, 2019 in Christchurch, New Zealand
Image: Flowers and tributes left for the victims of the terror attack

“We are all waiting. Alen woke up five days ago. She had seven or eight surgeries,” he added.

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