NZ PM Jacinda Ardern vows to change gun laws

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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. Credit:AAP

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has vowed to change the nation's gun laws after confirming the "primary perpetrator" in Christchurch's terror attack used five weapons.

"I can tell you one thing right now, our gun laws will change. There have been attempts to change our laws in 2005, 2012 and after an inquiry in 2017. Now is the time for change," Ms Ardern told reporters in Wellington on Saturday morning.

At least 49 people were killed and more than 40 injured in shootings at two mosques on Friday, which have since been confirmed as an act of terror.

Ms Ardern said she was advised the gunman obtained a Category A gun licence in November 2017 and "under that, he was able to acquire the guns that he held".

Locals gather to lay flowers near Masjid Al Noor Mosque in Christchurch after a terror attack by a gunman killed 49 people.

Locals gather to lay flowers near Masjid Al Noor Mosque in Christchurch after a terror attack by a gunman killed 49 people.Credit:Jason South

The 28-year-old Australian-born citizen, who was not a resident of Christchurch, used two semi-automatic weapons, two shotguns and a lever-action firearm, she said.

"When people, of course, hear that this individual had acquired a gun licence and acquired weapons of that range, then obviously I think people will be seeking change, and I'm committing to that," Ms Ardern said.

AAP