Turkey has threatened to shut down and ban Twitter and Facebook. The social networking giants are not taking down the account of a newspaper (BirGun) covering an event that the Turkish government does not want to be covered. Specifically, the action taken by the Turkish government stems from a ban on coverage of an investigation into Turkish Intelligence Agency trucks that were carrying weapons for extremists in Syria. The move by Turkey to shut down, and eliminate access to Twitter and Facebook within the borders of the country would not be the first time that such an event was threatened to the two social networks.
The newspaper in question for leaking those documents is the left-wing news agency called BirGun. The account run by the BirGun newspaper urged that everyone should know, and understand the truth while allowing free speech and conversation to continue throughout the country.
A Twitter spokesperson said, “Out of almost 60,000 tweets on the account, Twitter withheld access in Turkey to the small number of tweets that discussed the national security issue referenced in the order. We continue to work diligently to protect the rights of our users and preserve access for millions of Twitter users in Turkey.”
However, this is not the first time that the Turkish government has threatened the two social networks with a ban over the way information is shared on the networks. In fact, a very similar situation arose in early 2014, when Turkish officials did not like the details and conversation happening on the social networks – ultimately suggesting that they would take action against the networks in an effort to keep conversation around various topics to a minimum. The Turkish government argues that the release of the documents threatens national security, and even goes as far as to point out that there is no way any government agency is participating in any sharing of weapons or anything else with terrorists in Syria.
At this very moment, it is hard to say what will come of the threats that continue to assault Twitter, even as they have already blocked the specific content that was leaked. The Turkish government has demanded that the entire account of the newspaper in question – who regularly opposes the government in many ways – be shut down. If not, Turkey says that they will shut down the entire network within the country.