Did Turkey Just Revoke Its Ban On Twitter?

by
Reuters
Several Internet service providers in Turkey blocked access to Twitter – again – following a local court ruling in Suruc.

Twitter Ban

Turkey will lift a block on access to Twitter shortly, after the micro-blogging site removed images related to a suicide bomb attack blamed on Islamic State, a senior Turkish official told Reuters on Wednesday.

Several Internet service providers earlier blocked access to Twitter in line with a local court ruling to prevent the distribution of images of the attack two days ago in the southeastern town of Suruc near the Syrian border.

Twitter Ban

Turkish police detained at least 11 people overnight as anti-government protests following the attack.

Two police officers were found dead, shot in the head, in a house in the southeastern city of Sanliurfa on Wednesday, security sources said, though it was not immediately clear if their killing was related to the wider disturbances.

Twitter Ban

Protests erupted in a dozen or so neighborhoods in Istanbul late on Tuesday, as well as cities in the predominantly Kurdish southeast, after Monday's bombing in the Kurdish town of Suruc near the Syrian border, which killed 32 people.

Twitter Ban

Turkey's NATO allies have expressed concern about control of the border which in parts runs directly parallel with territories controlled by Islamic State. Some 1.8 million Syrrian refugees live on the Turkish side and smuggling is rife.

Many of Turkey's Kurds and opposition supporters suspect President Tayyip Erdogan and the ruling AK Party of covertly backing Islamic State against Kurdish fighters in Syria, something the government has repeatedly denied.

Twitter Ban

"Murderer Islamic State, collaborator Erdogan and AKP" some of the protesters chanted as they marched down a major shopping avenue in Istanbul's Kadikoy neighhourhood, before police fired tear gas and water cannon when they refused to disperse.

Twitter Ban

There were also protests overnight in the capital Ankara, where demonstrators carried pictures of those killed in the Suruc attack as well as banners of the youth federation of which many of the victims were members.

Twitter Ban

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Tuesday rejected accusations that Turkey had tacitly supported Islamic State and had unwittingly opened the door to the bombing. He has said, however, that initial evidence suggests Islamic State was responsible for the attack.

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