According to the Telecommunications Watchdog, Turkey has blocked the access to the online encyclopedia Wikipedia on Saturday, the Government has taken this decision citing a law that allows it to ban access to web contents that represents a threat to national security.
Under the law, the watchdog has to submit the ban to a court within 24 hours, then the court has two days to decide whether the ban should be confirmed.
“After technical analysis and legal consideration … an administrative measure has been taken for this website (Wikipedia.Org),” the BTK telecommunications watchdog said in a statement on its website.
Monitoring group Turkey Blocks first observed the block of Wikipedia at 8:00 a.m. (1.00 a.m. ET) on Saturday.
“The loss of availability is consistent with internet filters used to censor content in the country,” reported Turkey Blocks.
The Turkish communications Ministry announced that Wikipedia has been banned due to its attempts to run a “smear campaign” against Turkey. Some pages in the encyclopedia purported that the Turkish Government was coordinating with militant groups.
“Instead of coordinating against terrorism, it has become part of an information source which is running a smear campaign against Turkey in the international arena,” reported the Anadolu Agency.
Turkey it asking Wikipedia to remove the content that doesn’t meet its demands, only in this case, the ban will be lifted.
Turkey has adopted similar measures in the past, the Government blocked major social media platforms such as Twitter or Facebook. The Turkish Government always denied censorship actives and blamed outages on spikes in usage after major events.
Security experts confirmed that the blackouts on social media are the result of the operations of the government to stop the spread of militant images and propaganda.
“President Tayyip Erdogan says the measures are needed given the scope of the security threat Turkey faces.”reported the Reuters agency.
“Turkey last year jailed 81 journalists, making it the world’s top jailor of journalists, according to the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists.”