Turkey’s repressive Islamist government is at it again. Multiple local media sources are reporting on Thursday that the government of Turkey has banned students from posting pictures and opinions about school or school-related activities on Facebook, Twitter and other social media.
The new policies are promulgated by the Turkish Education Ministry, and are now in force after being published in the Official Gazette on July 1st, according to Dogan news agency.
Media reports highlight that students in Turkey are now barred from sharing pictures and videos from inside the school without the specific consent of their teacher, and are also not allowed to criticize classmates or staff. Moreover, students who violate the draconian new social media policies will face disciplinary action up to possible expulsion.
Of note, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Islamic-rooted ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) have been working for years to Islamicize the country’s education system, was defeated and lost its majority in parliament for the first time in 13 years in an election held on June 7. Erdogan and AKP are currently trying to put together a coalition government with the various opposition parties to rule the country and avoid having to call another election.
Turkey has history of social media controls
President Erdogan and his AKP cabal have been criticized globally and lambasted domestically regarding their numerous efforts to crack down on free speech being expressed through social media.
In fact, back in April, the country’s at-the-time AKP-controlled parliament passed legislation that tightened government control over the Internet by permitting the authorities to block websites without prior legal authorization from a judge. Erdogan has also been repeatedly criticized for trying to work around, bulldoze or replace members of Turkey’s judicial system who tried to resist Erdogan’s imperial ambitions.
The Turkish government also blocked both Twitter and YouTube in the Spring of 2014 when the services were used to widely spread audio recordings implicating then-Premier Erdogan and his cabal in a corruption scandal.