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YouTube block not eliminated in Turkey - UPDATE

10 April 2014 [14:11] - TODAY.AZ
The Communication Technologies Institution (BTK) has announced that it will not unblock YouTube while "criminal content" remains on the popular video-sharing website, contradicting the latest April 9 court ruling Hurriyet Daily News reported .

Access to YouTube was blocked without a court order on March 27 by the Telecommunications Authority (T?B), hours after recordings of a key security meeting on Syria were leaked online. What has followed is a remarkable zigzagging of court rulings and counter court rulings over the block.

The initial ban was first supported by a subsequent court ruling issued by Ankara's Golba?i district court that justified the ban based on a law criminalizing insults to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the Turkish Republic.

However, on April 4 the Golbasi Court of Peace demanded access to YouTube be unblocked, but a higher court then reversed this order on April 5 by ruling that the ban must remain until the "criminal content" is removed by YouTube.

On April 9, the same court then revoked the preventive measure temporarily imposed upon the prosecution's request, ruling that the ban on YouTube "be declared null and void."

The BTK, however, announced late April 9 that the blanket ban on YouTube would continue despite the latest court order, until all "the criminal content" is removed.

"Some content in 15 links was removed, but YouTube blocked some other content only for Turkish users while leaving it open to other countries. Since March 27, a total of 151 links have been located on the website broadcasting the same criminal content," the BTK said, stressing that it had contacted YouTube for the removal of this content.


The access to YouTube video service has been unblocked in Turkey in accordance to the court's decision, Turkish Milliyet newspaper reported on April 9.

The court made a decision to unblock the YouTube video service, according to the newspaper.

Thus, the 13-day block of the service has been eliminated. The ban on access remains only through relevant links.

The access to YouTube social network in Turkey was blocked again on April 5.

Previously, the access to YouTube video service was unblocked in Turkey in accordance to the court decision.

The audio of a secret meeting on the situation in Syria which involved the heads of the intelligence service and the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces was uploaded on to YouTube on March 27. Subsequently YouTube access was blocked in Turkey.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said that this leaking of information is in the interests of the Syrian regime, terrorist groups and Al Qaeda.

"This actually equates to a declaration of war," Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on March 28 while commenting on this situation.

"The country will do everything possible to reveal and punish the perpetrators of such acts," Davutoglu added.

Moreover, Davutoglu stressed that the wiretapping of the Turkish power structures conversation equates to espionage against the country.

Earlier, the access to Twitter microblogging network was also unblocked in Turkey.



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