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ANKARA, March 26. /ITAR-TASS/. Popular social network Twitter has been blocked in Turkey because it does not obey court decisions, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a televised interview ahead of local elections scheduled for March 30. Such a measure is Turkey’s internal matter, Erdogan stressed.
Commenting on the reaction of the European countries, the prime minister urged the EU to “mind their own business”. “What we did is our internal matter. There are court rulings for that. Why does the EU ignore what’s going on in other countries? It (the EU) should treat us the same way it treats others,” Turkish media quoted Erdogan as saying.
The prime minister explained that tens and hundreds of requests to delete accounts and messages in Twitter come from France, Germany, Great Britain, US, Russia, India. Erdogan says most of these requests are fulfilled.
“Turkey wants to close only two profiles. We send court orders, but they (Twitter) don’t hear us. Can you expect the same good intentions from me? There’s only one option left – to block (the website),” Erdogan noted.
The Turkish prime minister says the EU’s reaction is unjustified. The European countries have criticized Turkey, saying that such decision violates human rights. “When speaking about freedoms, we are a long way ahead of the EU countries. Most of these countries do not have the freedom of speech that we have here (in Turkey). A person can say whatever he wants about a prime minister. You cannot do the same there (in the EU countries),” Erdogan said. In similar situations in Europe the authorities were fast to sanction those who criticize them, says the prime minister.
Erdogan stressed that Turkey will act decisively on social networks in case of their refusal to fulfill court orders on closing profiles and blocking certain content.
The access to Twitter was closed in Turkey on March 20. The social network was used to distribute compromising information about the prime minister and the government.