The crack down on social media in Turkey continues with a seemingly wide spread operation against Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Access to the three large social networks are now blocked following a Republic Prosecutor’s instruction to major ISPs.
URLs of the social networks are not added to the TİB’s banned websites database, and the reason of the blocking has not been disclosed yet. One of the ISPs shows the below image when asked for YouTube. It reads “Access to this site is banned by court order”.
UPDATE: Our sources with ISPs said the instruction for blocking the access to three social networks has come from a Republic Prosecutor. The ban has been implemented by the ISPs gradually as they receive the Prosecutor’s letter.
UPDATE 2: According to our resources with the knowledge of the matter the ban on Facebook was lifted right after the social network agreed to remove the contents those are subject to blocking decision. Access to Twitter and YouTube remains blocked. Daily Hürriyet newspaper published the relevant court’s blocking decision on its website.
We also learned that the court decision is related with a recent prosecutor hostage crisis that resulted in the killing of the prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz and the two gunmen who took him hostage. The Turkish Government banned the live-coverage of the event that took place on 31 March 2015, due to security concerns. On 2 April 2015, a media ban against several news outlets including daily Cumhuriyet and Hürriyet who published prosecutor’s photos was put into practice.
UPDATE 3: Twitter Policy account confirms that Twitter service is interrupted in Turkey.
We are aware of reports of interruption of our service in #Turkey, and we are working to restore access for our users as soon as possible.
— Policy (@policy) April 6, 2015
Story is developing…