The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) urged the Turkish government to lift bans on Google and related internet services. The OSCE demanded to align internet laws with international standards.
In a letter sent by the OSCE Representative for Media Freedom, Dunya Miyatoviç, to the Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoğlu, she said, "I request the Turkish officials to lift the obstacles that restrict Turkish citizens from participating in the global information society. I furthermore demand to implement necessary reforms into Law no. 5651 on Regulation of Publications on the Internet and Suppression of Crimes Committed by means of Such Publications".
Access to the video sharing site YouTube has being banned in Turkey for two years based on the law related to internet crimes. The access ban was recently renewed and subsequently included also Google services such as e-mail, documentation, translation services, calendars and access to other services.
Click here for the OSCE report on Turkey and Internet Censorship.
Turkish institutions protest internet access ban
A total of 36 institutions, organizations and initiatives, among them also the Independent Communication Network (BİA) with its internet news site bianet, expressed their protest against the internet access ban imposed by the government and the judiciary in a joint statement published on 22 June.
The statement pointed to the fact that internet censorship violated freedom of thought and the right to access information and furthermore means economic disadvantages. The organizations demanded to lift the Law. no. 5651.
The statement emphasized that the protection of children is a legitimate reason and that therefore a new regulation should be worked out by involving a broad number of participants.
According to the paper, the access ban of the internet breaches international agreements as well as the Turkish Constitution. The organizations called the Minister of Transport, Binali Yıldırım, to resign since he failed to take the necessary measures.
The government claims tax reasons for the access ban because Google has not opened an office in Turkey and thus avoids paying taxes. Internet access bans are implemented by the Telecommunication Communication Presidency (TİB), which has recently stopped publishing a list of banned sites and the reasons for the bans. (EÜ/EÖ/VK)
The joint statement was signed by Cyber-Rights.Org.TR - http://privacy.cyber-rights.org.tr/, İNETD (Internet Teknolojileri Derneği) - http://www.inetd.org.tr/, Türkiye İnsan Hakları Vakfı - http://www.tihv.org.tr/, Bianet, Bağımsız İletişim Ağı - http://bianet.org/, Elektrik Mühendisleri Odası - http://www.emo.org.tr/, SansüreSansür - http://sansuresansur.org/, Arı Hareketi - http://www.ari.org.tr/, Netdaş - http://www.netdas.org, Engelli Web - http://engelliweb.com/, Ekşi Sözlük - http://sozluk.sourtimes.org/, Korsan Partisi Oluşumu- http://korsanpartisi.org, Gelecekonline - http://www.gelecekonline.com, Neonebu.com - http://www.neonebu.com/, Alternatif Bilişim - http://alternatifbilisim.org/, Linux Kullanıcıları Derneği - http://www.lkd.org.tr, Millimotor.com / millitup.com, Pardus Kullanıcıları Derneği - http://www.pkd.org.tr/, 3H Hareketi - http://www.3hhareketi.org/, Korsanparti - Korsan Partisinin Korsanı - http://friendfeed.com/korsanparti, Sunipeyk - http://www.sunipeyk.com/, MMistanbul.com - http://mmistanbul.com, Muz Cumhuriyeti - Sansüre Karşı Ekşi Sözlük Zirvesi - firstname.lastname@example.org, Yeşiller Partisi Korsan Cephesi - http://www.ypkc.org/, Java Teknolojileri ve Programcıları Derneği - http://www.jtpd.org/, TiEV - Tüm Internet Evleri Derneği - http://www.tiev.org.tr/, Antikapitalist Öğrenciler - http://www.antikapitalistogrenci.org/, Fotograf Web TR - http://www.fotograf.web.tr/, Genç Siviller - http://www.gencsiviller.net/, Türkiye Zeka Vakfı - http://www.tzv.org.tr, Bilgi Sözlük - http://www.bilgisozluk.com, Türk Kütüphaneciler Derneği (TKD) - http://www.kutuphaneci.org.tr/, Üniversite ve Araştırma Kütüphanecileri Derneği (ÜNAK) - http://www.unak.org.tr, Sakarya Bilişim Sektörü Derneği (SABİDER) - http://www.sabider.org/, Bilgi Teknolojileri ve Eğitim Derneği (BİLTEDER) - http://www.bilteder.org.tr/, Türkiye Gazeteciler Cemiyeti - http://www.tgc.org.tr/, İnşaat Mühendisleri Odası (TMMOB) - http://www.imo.org.tr/.