CALIFORNIA
Sign up for the Essential California newsletter to get great stories delivered to your inbox
World World Now

Turkey orders access to Twitter restored after two-week ban

The Turkish government late Thursday ordered Internet service providers to restore access to Twitter, lifting a two-week ban on the microblogging site a day after the nation's highest court ruled it illegal and an infringement on free speech.

An official from the office of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan confirmed that "the decision to block access to Twitter has been rescinded," the Hurriyet newspaper reported on its website.

Erdogan's government blocked access to Twitter on March 20 after the San Francisco-based social media company refused to remove tweets that included YouTube video links showing what appeared to be Turkish government ministers and members of Erdogan's inner circle engaged in corrupt practices.

A leading opposition figure and two academics filed suit against the government after the Turkish Telecommunications Directorate (TIB) blocked access to Twitter 10 days ahead of Turkey's local elections this past Sunday.

On Wednesday, Turkey's Constitutional Court ruled unanimously that the ban on Twitter violated the constitution's guarantee of free expression and ordered access restored immediately.

YouTube access remains blocked by the government, but legal actions similar to the one brought to restore Twitter are pending in court.

The attempts by Erdogan's government to stifle compromising information related to the investigation of high-level corruption allegations has been seen as the latest heavy-handed action by the Islamist premier and his Justice and Development Party.

Although the corruption scandal has presented Erdogan with the strongest challenge to his authority in 11 years as government chief, his party handily won a majority of the local government seats decided by Sunday's vote.

carol.williams@latimes.com

Twitter: @cjwilliamslat

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
  • Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan denounces 'vile attack' against him
    Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan denounces 'vile attack' against him

    GAZIANTEP, Turkey – A defiant Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out Tuesday at a “vile attack” against him after the leaking  of audio recordings suggesting that he and close family members were implicated in a corruption scandal that has roiled the nation.

  • After Nepal earthquake, chaos at Katmandu airport: 'From Paradise to Hell'
    After Nepal earthquake, chaos at Katmandu airport: 'From Paradise to Hell'

    Under a yellow moon that hung like a wedge of lemon in the sky, Ole Andersen was camped at 3 a.m. Monday out front of Katmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport with a green notebook, writing a story he called “From Paradise to Hell in a Few Seconds.”

  • Nepal earthquake death toll tops 3,200
    Nepal earthquake death toll tops 3,200

    Terrifying aftershocks continued to roil Nepal on Sunday, sending people screaming into the driving rain and complicating efforts to rescue survivors after a massive earthquake killed more than 3,200 people in the impoverished mountain nation and surrounding countries.

  • Nepal earthquake: Helping survivors

    Aid groups are rushing to get crucial supplies to survivors of Nepal's devastating earthquake, which has killed more than 3,200 people. Here is a look at some of the many humanitarian efforts underway and how to donate:

  • Aid agencies launch global relief effort for Nepal earthquake
    Aid agencies launch global relief effort for Nepal earthquake

    The massive earthquake in Nepal and its frightening aftershocks have unleashed another force almost as overwhelming: an international relief effort that already is involving governments, charity groups and private volunteers from all corners of the globe.

  • Nepal earthquake leaves climbers stranded on Mt. Everest
    Nepal earthquake leaves climbers stranded on Mt. Everest

    The earthquake-triggered avalanches that killed and critically injured dozens of climbers on Mt. Everest also destroyed the path between two camps on the side of the world's tallest mountain, leaving some mountaineers stranded and awaiting rescue.

Comments
Loading