Stephen Colbert has cancelled plans for The Late Show to visit New Zealand this week following last Friday’s terrorist attack that left 50 people dead.
Plans to visit has been kept largely under wraps, but followed New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern inviting him when she was a guest on the show in September.
“The world is still reeling from Friday’s terror attack in New Zealand,” Colbert said while opening his show this week. “All of our hearts go out to those at the Al Noor and Linwood mosques and to the great people of New Zealand. I have been down there and it is the most beautiful country I have ever seen and the Kiwis are the kindest people I’ve ever met.”
“I just love that country,” he said later. “If you’ve never been, go. The people there are unbelievably kind and welcoming. Obviously we’re not going to go down now but we hope to go down in the future and again, we want to say to everyone down there how sad and heartbroken we are for what that country is going through. For one of the hallmarks of New Zealand and one of the things I have always thought of, is it’s this wonderful, isolated country so far away from the problems we take for granted here north of the equator.
“And now this very particular brand of evil has infected that country like a ghost, something you wouldn’t imagine,” he added. “Truly, an evil creature has arrived on that island. I pray with all my heart that they take the action down there and have the courage to take action that we seem to lack up here in the United States. Good luck to them and blessings and peace to the Muslim community there and everywhere in the world.”
Variety reports there are no new dates planned as yet.