New Zealand authorities have arrested an 18-year old man for sharing the video of a recent terrorist attack that took place in Christchurch, New Zealand. The arrested person has been charged with counts such as distributing the hateful video and for encouraging violence. He reportedly uploaded a picture of one of the mosques that were a part of the March 15 terrorist attacks, along with the terrifying caption “target acquired.” According to a report by Reuters, this man is now facing up to approximately 28 years in prison.

New Zealand terrorist attacks

The arrested man, whose name can't be revealed due to a recent court order, was not in any way directly associated with the terrorist attacks. However, he is being charged with two counts of crime, including the sharing of an extreme violence-oriented video on the internet and for encouraging violence in the region. He has also been extensively involved in instigating violence in people of the region through the means of chat messages. According to reports from some of the major media outlets, Facebook is the platform he was using for this purpose.

Also, the number of people who have seen these messages is not well-defined.

After the 18-year-old man was arrested by the authorities in New Zealand, he attempted to apply for bail. However, his plea was rejected by Stephen O’Driscoll, a district court judge, on March 18. He is required to make another appearance in court on April 8, as reported by Australia's News Corp. The video of terrorist attacks was first live-streamed by the 28-year-old attacker himself on Facebook.

Since then, the video has gone viral on other social media platforms as well, such as YouTube and Twitter.

The gunman responsible for these attacks ended up killing more than 50 civilians and injuring many others in the two mosques. He was eventually seized by the police, soon after he carried out these attacks. The shooter is being called a white supremacist. In his manifesto, he has called US President Donald Trump a symbol of renewed white identity. ICE has also detained more undocumented immigrants. I also want to share that Beto is running for president.

New Zealand censorship laws

The censorship laws that are prevailing in New Zealand allow them to make the distribution or viewing of certain videos illegal.

Individuals can be sent to jail for committing such offenses. David Shanks, who currently serves as the chief censor in New Zealand, has already termed the video of the terrorist attack as “officially objectionable" over the course of last weekend. David Shanks has also stated that they have officially warned all the individuals not to view, download, or even share this terrifying video on any social media platform.

The Films, Videos & Publications Classification Act 1993 gives the government authorities in New Zealand the ability to ban certain image or video that they deem as illegal.

According to Facebook's latest transparency report, the company has produced some data as requested by the New Zealand authorities.

New Zealand isn't the only country that has put restrictions on the sharing of certain videos. India banned some political critics on social media before its elections on April 11. A ban on false news was implemented by Russia this week. Also, the middle-east nation of Egypt has announced that it is planning to put some severe restrictions on social media accounts with followings of more than 5,000 people.

Shanks knows that putting limitations on social media is practically impossible. But has said that declaring the video as illegal would hopefully improve the ongoing hard circumstances. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on March 19 that these social media companies need to step up and take responsibility for their actions. She also said they should focus on things other than just the profits.

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