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Court In Turkey Orders Twitter Service Restored

A Twitter app on an iPhone screen. Turkey banned the social media service for two weeks, but a court has now ordered the ban lifted on constitutional grounds.
A Twitter app on an iPhone screen. Turkey banned the social media service for two weeks, but a court has now ordered the ban lifted on constitutional grounds.

Twitter is back on in Turkey after a constitutional court ruled that a government-imposed ban on the social media service was a breach of free expression.

The country's telecom authority lifted the 2-week-old ban, after it was blocked in the runup to last Sunday's local elections.

Turkey's telecommunication authority, or TIB, blocked access to Twitter on March 21. The order followed Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's remarks that he would "eradicate" the network after a series of anonymously posted audio clips that purported to expose corruption at the top levels of government.

TIB said in a statement that it was in the process of restoring access to Twitter, but it appears that a block on YouTube, imposed last week, remains in place.

The move proved controversial, however, even within Erdogan's own government. President Abdullah Gul, like many other users, employed a text-to-tweet application that circumvented the ban. He tweeted: "One cannot approve of the complete closure of social media platforms."

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