Turkey Blocks Twitter

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The social networking service Twitter has been blocked in Turkey apparently after the Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan took offense at corruption allegations being published by its users.

Twitter has around 10 million users in the country, and attempts to visit the site are being redirected to a message from the country's telecoms regulator that cites a court order requiring that the service be blocked in the country.

The court order appears to be due to Twitter refusing to remove links to websites publishing the corruption allegations. At the moment, although the website is blocked, it appears that the text messaging service that Twitter offers is still working.

Prime Minister Erdogan said that he would "root out" and "wipe out" Twitter services, which he said has helped his political enemies conduct a smear campaign against him.

"The international community can say this, can say that. I don't care at all. Everyone will see how powerful the Republic of Turkey is," he said.

If the Prime Minister had hopped to quell speculation about the allegations against his family, blocking Twitter has however only made them vastly more visible to a much wider audience.

The allegations mostly stem from leaked recordings of conversations, which allege to show the Prime Minister instructing his son how to dispose of a large amount of cash during a police probe into where the money came from. The Prime Minister claims the recordings are fakes.

The Prime Minister has also said he may target other websites, including Facebook and YouTube if they do not remove links to the recordings.

It's worth noting that that Prime Minister is himself on Twitter, and has nearly 4.2 million followers on the service. His last message was just before the ban came into effect -- a link to a YouTube video.

On the web: @RT_Erdogan

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Tags: twitter  Turkey 

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