49 people are dead following shootings in New Zealand.

A mass shooting has taken place in two mosques in the city of Christchurch, New Zealand.

A male in his late 20s has been charged with murder and should appear in court tomorrow, According to the New Zealand Police commissioner Mike Bush.

20 people remain seriously injured in the attacks. Three men and one woman remain in police custody.

Police responded to reports of shots fired in central Christchurch at around 1:40 pm. (00:40 Irish Time)

Armed police have were deployed.

The gunman is an Australian citizen who identifies himself on Twitter as “Brenton Tarrant” who wrote a 73-page manifesto declaring his intentions — he was not on security watch lists.

At a news conference, Police Commissioner Mike Bush said a number of improvised explosive devices were also found attached to vehicles in the city.

He said they have since been made safe.

41 people were killed at the Deans Avenue mosque and 7 were killed at the Linwood mosque. One person taken to hospital subsequently died from their injuries.

Map of Christchurch New Zealand

The mosques are around 7km away from each other in the centre of the city.

“The attackers were apprehended by local police staff,” said Commissioner Bush.

“There have been some absolute acts of bravery. I am hugely proud of our police staff about the way they have responded to this.”But let’s not assume that the danger is gone.”

New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern has said that “this is one of New Zealand’s darkest days”: