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YouTube files complaint to Turkish Constitutional Court

9 May 2014

YouTube has filed an individual complaint to the Turkish Constitutional Court against the continuing ban on its website which began on 27th March.

Access to YouTube was blocked by Turkey’s Telecommunications Authority (TIB) without a court order, hours after recordings of a key security meeting on Syria were leaked online, Turkish daily ‘Hurriyet’ has reported. Representing YouTube, lawyer Gonenc Gurkaynak also filed a lawsuit to the Ankara 4th Administrative Court demanding of a stay of execution and cancellation of the decision on the ban.

The lawyer, who had previously represented Twitter when it was blocked, also appealed against a local court decision which reversed an earlier ruling that lifted a ban on YouTube on 5th April. The Golbasi Criminal Court of First Instance said the ban would continue until the “criminal content” was removed.

In response, Turkey’s Telecommunications Authority (TIB), Communications Minister Lutfi Elvan has said that the court ruling for a stay of execution on the YouTube ban has not yet been delivered.

The TIB will make the necessary evaluations once it has received a notification about the order, Elvan said on 8th May, adding that talks between YouTube and the Turkish government were ongoing.

The ban on social media websites in Turkey has drawn widespread criticism both from inside Turkey and abroad as concern mounts over the increasingly authoritarian stance of Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

 

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