Turkey: press decries “massive censure” on the inter

07 April, 14:26

    (ANSAmed) - ANKARA, APRIL 7 - The Turkish independent press denounced the blocking of Twitter, Facebook and Youtube and the threats toward Google by Istanbul's Public Prosecutor's Office calling the moves a form of "massive censure" which "halves democracy". Access to the three social networks was blocked in an attempt to force them to black out accounts and sites which published the picture of the prosecutor who was taken hostage and threatened with a gun on his temple by his two kidnappers. Google was also threatend with a block if it did not comply with a request to stop access to sites which published the picture.

    The three social networks bowed to the request and were accessible again after a few hours. According to Cumhuriyet, who spoke of a "Halved democracy", Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Turkey has imposed "the most serious black-out witnessed so far against social networks". Birgun cautioned that with the approaching political elections scheduled on June 7, the country is heading towards "chaos and censure", Yurt's title was "massive censure", and Taraf stressed that, as Erdogan promised last year, Ankara "is eradicating Twitter". At the same time, seven Turkish papers critical of the Islamic government, have been accused of "propaganda in favour of a terrorist group" after they published the picture. Prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz was taken hostage last week by two men, allegedly belonging to the radical leftist group Dhkp-C demanding "justice" for a youth killed by the police during the demonstrations in Gezi Park. The prosecutors and his two kidnappers were killed when Turkish special forces stormed in to free him.

    According to the government the hostage was killed by his kidnappers, but there is strong suspicion that he was actually killed in the aftermath of the special forces' assault. The results of the post mortem have yet to be made public. Leader of the opposition, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, asked for the results of the autopsy to be swiftly released to the public.

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