Just two weeks after Turkey’s controversial banning of Twitter, the nation’s Constitutional Court has overturned the ruling.
The move to ban Twitter was originally taken after the government took umbrage to allegations of corruption that included voice recordings that apparently implicated Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Threats to ban social media
The ban came as no surprise as two weeks earlier Erdogan had threatened to ban both Facebook and YouTube claiming that his political opponents were using it as a tool to attack him.
Web Razzi reports “Turkish government’s ban on Twitter is lifted following yesterday’s ruling by the Constitutional Court dictating that an overall ban on communication platforms is a violation of the rights to freedom of speech.” This is good news for supporters of free speech and comes at a time when Turkey seems to be moving in the opposite direction.
However, Turkey’s PM is less than impressed with the ruling and has responded angrily “I don’t find it right and patriotic that the Constitutional Court has adopted such a decision two days after a direct application in which there were so many files waiting to be reviewed at the Constitutional Court. While they are protecting an American company, our national and moral values are being disregarded,” Hurriyet reports.
Last month, the government passed a law which allows its telecoms authority carte blanche to block websites without having to obtain a court injunction, a move that led to major protests in the country’s capital.
In another move to block freedom of the Internet, the Turkish authorities banned YouTube after a leaked video appeared on the world’s biggest video sharing site showed what appeared to show Turkey’s intelligence chief, among others, discussing possible military operations in neighboring Syria.
While lifting the ban on Twitter will come as good news, Erdogan is clearly unhappy and the debate over freedom of the Internet in Turkey is likely to go on for some time.