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Twitter scrambles over Turkey cyber-attacks amid ‘Nazi’ row

March 15, 2017 at 2:38 pm

Image of a protest against the Dutch ban on Turkish ministers outside the Dutch embassy in Ankara, Turkey on 12 March 2017 [Emre Şenoğlu/Anadolu]

Dozens of high profile Twitter accounts were subject to cyber-attacks that included swastikas and threats amid a diplomatic spat between Turkey and some western European countries.

Last week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused a various mainland European countries, including Germany and Netherlands of “fascist actions” reminiscent of Nazi times after Turkish politicians were banned from speaking at events in the country.

Read more: Turkey targets Dutch with diplomatic sanctions as ‘Nazi’ row escalates

The diplomatic conflict took to new levels when hackers took hold of a number of Twitter accounts, to spread their message in support for Erdogan’s remarks. Even the accounts of  Starbucks Argentina were included.

Translation: Nazi Germany and Nazi Netherlands, expect an “Ottoman slap” on 16 April. What does this Tweet say? Start learning Turkish.

The same message was pasted on other, more political accounts like Amnesty International and the European Parliament.

Turkey is set to hold a referendum on 16 April which would allow for a constitutional overhaul giving Erdogan the ability to run for two more terms in office.

Twitter users took to their profiles to post many polarising opinions on the hack that shook the social media website.

Turkish citizens called out their western European counterparts for what they believed were double standards

Victims of the cyber-attacks, especially high profile organisations and individuals felt compelled to address the disruption in their accounts head on, while others kept calm and acted as though nothing had happened.