A constitutional court in Turkey has overturned a ban on Twitter, according to Reuters. The court stated that the ban infringed upon freedom of expression, according to an official with Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s office.
Twitter blocked ahead of elections
Turkey’s telecommunication authority ordered the ban ahead of elections in Turkey, which were held last Sunday. The court handed down the ruling earlier today, and then officials lifted the ban this afternoon. There have been indications for days that the Turkish court might overrule the ban. Erdogan has more than once lashed out at social media, saying that it is dangerous and a menace to society. However, the courts apparently do not agree with him.
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Internet service providers were expected to have Twitter back up and running in Turkey within a few hours of the lifting of the ban. Twitter is not yet confirming whether its service is back up and officially running in Turkey.
Turks work around the Twitter ban
Even though Twitter was blocked, Turks were initially still able to post tweets by texting from their mobile devices. As a result, a record number of Turks flocked to Twitter, posting angry tweets which illustrated how badly the government’s decision to block the micro-blogging site had backfired on it. Some workarounds like tweeting through Google’s DNS were blocked after the initial ban on Twitter.
However, new ways of working around the ban kept popping up. The more the Turkish government tried to cut its constituents off from Twitter, the harder they worked to get on and tweet about the situation.
YouTube also banned in Turkey
Another service is still apparently banned in Turkey, however. Officials banned YouTube last week because of a recording which was allegedly leaked on the site. That recording contained what the poster claimed was a conversation involving Turkey’s head of intelligence talking about possibly striking against Syria. In the conversation, officials talked about sending in tanks.
The Turkish government claims that the recording is fake. Its authenticity has not been verified.