Terror attacks threaten to polarize Turkey

World Today

Turkey Attack Pictures of a victim and floral tributes left outside the nightclub for the victims of the gunman attack, in Istanbul, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017. (AP/Emrah Gurel)

Following the New Year’s terror attack in Istanbul, some disturbing messages emerged on social media. The images showed a deeply divided society.

But the Turkish government has emphasized they will not allow terror to polarize the country and have taken legal action to stop it.

CGTN’s Michal Bardavid reports. Follow Michal Bardavid on Twitter @michal_bardavid

Terror attacks threaten to polarize Turkey

Terror attacks threaten to polarize Turkey

Following the New Year's terror attack in Istanbul, some disturbing messages emerged on social media. The images showed a deeply divided society. But the Turkish government has emphasized they will not allow terror to polarize the country and have taken legal action to stop it. CGTN's Michal Bardavid reports.

On Sunday, January 1, 39 people lost their lives in a terror attack at a nightclub in central Istanbul.

While many in the country are mourning, some praised the brutal attack on social media, claiming that Muslims who celebrate New Year’s Eve should be punished.

A posting by a licensed football referee prompted the Football Federation to react with disciplinary punishment.

Before the attack, Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate, Mehmet Gormez sparked controversy by issuing a statement, which claims that New Year’s festivities do not meet Muslim values.

Experts stress there is a fine line that defines crimes on social media.

The Turkish government has announced a special 10-member team from cyber crime units and launched an investigation into 347 social media users that have posted messages in support of the New Year’s Eve terror attack.

The minister did not provide any details on what penal sanctions would be considered if crimes were committed on social media.

President Erodgan reacted to the hateful social media postings after the Istanbul attack and said the government will never allow anyone’s lifestyle to be under systematic threat in Turkey.