Turkish court halts the execution of Twitter ban [updated]

twitter-kirmizi-225x180A Turkish court has granted a motion for stay of execution for the nation-wide Twitter ban in Turkey. The decision was taken following appeals to 15th Administrative Court of Ankara by the Turkish Bar Association, Journalists’ Association of Turkey and some politicians.

Local IT lawyers claim TIB, the Telecommunications Authority of Turkey who took the decision to block the website, must remove the ban accordingly with immediate effect.

Attorney Sebnem Ahi, a local IT lawyer and regular contributor to Webrazzi, said that even if TIB appeals the motion of stay of execution to an upper court, it must release the access to Twitter until that upper court gives a verdict.

However, the Director of TIB, Ahmet C. Celik just announced that the decisions of TIB are not under the jurisdiction of the Administrative Courts and any decision of this nature is void. He said only the Criminal Courts of Peace are entitled to take on issues regarding TIB’s affairs.

Constitutional Court is also reviewing the latest legislation passed by the AKP government last month, giving TİB the authority to block any web page or site if it deems that the said page/site ‘violates personal freedoms and privacy’, without a court order. The legislation also enforces that the ISPs are obliged to execute the ban within 4 hours following TİB’s decision.

UPDATE: We have learnt that the board of directors of BTK, the governmental IT technologies administration committee that includes TİB as a sub-organ, are now holding an ’emergency meeting’ to discuss latest decision of the court. Meantime, Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç said during a short Q&A with the journalists that ‘they may implement the decision of the court’.

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