While Belgian security forces were conducting a series of high-profile raids in the centre of Brussels on Sunday night, authorities asked social media users not to discuss the operations to avoid providing information to terrorists.
On the whole, the population complied. But with the city having been in virtual lockdown all weekend, many sought a release from the gravity of the situation by sharing pictures of … cats.
KEEPCALMANDTWEET A CAT. #BrusselsLockdown#Bruxellespic.twitter.com/h1TyyCj9Dr— Pierre Scheurette (@PierreScheu) November 22, 2015
May the force be with us. #BrusselsLockdownpic.twitter.com/m9OuEVhfXS— TineEeckhout (@TineEeckhout) November 22, 2015
#relax, Mes amis #BrusselsLockdownpic.twitter.com/LENxVUnnv9— JaneAustenMaMaschio (@ExTimUpperClass) November 22, 2015
Residents told to stay away from windows. Not sure they got the message #BrusselsLockdownpic.twitter.com/kv3Mosk5mZ— Matteo Albania (@m_albania) November 22, 2015
Where is Catman when we need him? #BrusselsLockdownpic.twitter.com/zXVawPuUAA— Hendrik Bourgeois (@HendrikBourgeoi) November 22, 2015
You can't keep hiding. #BrusselsLockdownpic.twitter.com/4ls1e9qB3s— Lore Vonck (
lorevonck) <a href="https://twitter.com/lorevonck/status/668537620004237312">November 22, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Love those Belgians! Combatting terrorism one cat gif at a time and winning at Twitter! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BrusselsLockdown?src=hash">#BrusselsLockdown</a> <a href="https://t.co/2kUbCwESBz">pic.twitter.com/2kUbCwESBz</a></p>— Helen Jenkins (MsHelenJenkins) November 23, 2015
Belgian police got in on the joke by sending a picture of cat food, to thank everyone for their help.
Pour les chats qui nous ont aidé hier soir… Servez-vous! #BrusselsLockdownpic.twitter.com/7O5ENF6nXa— Police Fédérale (@PolFed_presse) November 23, 2015