According to Turkey Blocks, the country has restricted access for its people to some of the most popular social media website including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The messaging app WhatsApp and YouTube are also included in this ban. So Turkish people are now either denied access to these websites, or they are dealing with connection throttling. But Turkey has banned Facebook, Twitter and YouTube before, so this is not something totally unexpected from the government. The only novelty is that it is now affecting both Instagram and WhatsApp.
A censorship push
On Friday, people all over Turkey began experiencing difficulties when they tried using WhatsApp. Turkey Blocks is saying that this is the first time they have detected a national restriction on the hugely popular messaging app. But Turkey is not the only country who takes such measures for purely political reasons. Actually, the reason behind this ban might be the unexpected detention of some members of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party. This is the opposition party, which does not agree with president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s way of ruling the country. The country has been dealing with some turbulences because of this. Everybody knows that they are often turning to such measures in crisis situations. For example, a terrorist attack.
Officials are not telling the truth
Turkey ‘s Prime Minister, Binali Yildirm, did not admit that this was the main reason for the blocking attempt but said that, sometimes, they can implement such measures for security reasons. He also said to the reporters in Istanbul that the situation is temporary and will soon come back to normal. In the meantime, the messaging service Skype has also stopped working in Turkey.
Ban after ban
This blocking attempt comes just a month after Turkey ’s government restricted access to services like Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive and Google Drive. Specialists believe that the government has taken this harsh measure to stop some private emails from spreading around the country. The emails were reportedly belonging to Erdogan’s son-in-law, Berat Albayrak, who is the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of Turkey.
The easiest way to solve problems
The monitoring site Turkey Block also said that this way of solving problems does not surprise anyone. According to them, such Internet restrictions are the first thing the government does when they want to stop certain news from spreading. They are suppressing the people’s right to be informed and to know what is going on in their country. This way they are preventing civil unrest, but it is not the best way to do it. It is like they don’t even think of a solution, they are just pulling the plug on Internet and that solves everything.
Last week, some users located in southeastern Turkey reported that they were having difficulties using the Internet. But many people in Turkey who know a thing or two in the IT domain are often turning to Virtual Private Networks. They do this in order to sabotage the restrictions imposed by the government.
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