KUALA LUMPUR: The police have identified some of those spreading racially-charged fake news and irresponsible comments on social media over a recent shooting incident in Penang, says the Inspector-General of Police.
“Bukit Aman CID has identified them and we will call them up to record their statements, ” said Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador.
“After we are satisfied, they will be prosecuted. These statements are causing public distress and we have been urged to take decisive action as soon as possible, ” he added.
The IGP was referring to the recent incident where a Malaysian woman of Indian descent was killed before her attacker was shot down by police.
“There are certain irresponsible parties who have uploaded a few articles that border on sedition that can spur hate and misunderstanding.
“If this is not curbed, it will lead to physical violence.
“I wish to touch on the case in Penang where a Malaysian-Indian woman was killed after being hacked and her attacker, a Malay man, was shot down by police.
“Pursuant to this, a few people have uploaded certain articles on social media that are incorrect with the intention of inciting anger among the people, ” he told a special press conference at Bukit Aman on Wednesday (Sept 25).
The IGP said he has no doubt that the ultimate intention of these irresponsible parties was to create racial tension among the people.
Abdul Hamid added that the case in Penang is an isolated incident.
“The attacker was clearly influenced by videos of violence in the Middle East, purportedly portraying atrocities against Muslims there.
“As I've said before, we must refrain from making our own assumptions about such videos.
“The attacker was influenced by constantly watching such videos, which have no connection to our country, ” he said.
Abdul Hamid said the police would not stay quiet and will take action against those who exploited the incident.
“Don’t incite sentiments that could disrupt public order, ” he said.
He urged members of the public not to spread unverified news or make irresponsible comments on social media.
The IGP also touched on the recent incident in Batu Arang where three robbers were shot down.
“Irresponsible parties came out with comments with no basis and made allegations against the police.
“I have said many times if there is evidence then come forward and cooperate with us, or wait for when an inquest is conducted, ” he said.
There are also videos uploaded on social media that gave the false view that a woman was there during the shooting incident, he added.
“A police report has been made by my own officer against those who started this story.
“I remind the public not to be influenced by these viral videos and unverified news.
“If you are unsure and in need of explanation, ask the police anytime.
“Don't make your own conclusion – the act of sharing such articles and making additional comments are offences and will be dealt with.
“No more warning, we will take immediate action, ” the IGP said.
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