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POLITICS > 470,000 people wiretapped over the last decade in Turkey

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News

Some 470,000 people have been subject to eavesdropping over the past 11 years, according to officials from the Gendarmerie Command’s intelligence unit. Gendarmerie intelligence officials also say they have found no data about the prime minister’s wire-tapping in their examination of their own records. In 2012, over 33,000 people were eavesdropped on by the Gendarmerie

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Gendarmerie authorities say that it is possible for almost anybody to engage in illegal eavesdropping activity, in response to a question about the sex-tape scandal that led former main opposition leader Deniz Baykal to step down in 2010.

Gendarmerie authorities say that it is possible for almost anybody to engage in illegal eavesdropping activity, in response to a question about the sex-tape scandal that led former main opposition leader Deniz Baykal to step down in 2010.

Göksel Bozkurt Göksel Bozkurt goksel.bozkurt@hurriyet.com.tr

In areas under the Gendarmerie’s jurisdiction over the past 11 years, some 470,000 people have been subject to eavesdropping, officials from the Gendarmerie Command’s intelligence unit told members of Parliament’s Eavesdropping Examination Commission.

The commission members visited both the Police Department and the Gendarmerie Command’s intelligence unit on March 13. They also visited the headquarters of the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) and Turkey’s Telecommunications Communication Presidency (TİB) yesterday. According to figures provided by the Gendarmerie, in 2002, only 380 people were eavesdropped on by their institution, while in 2012, this figure was 33,622.

No file in wire-tapping

In response to questions from deputies, gendarmerie authorities said that they found no information or documents regarding the case of the wire-tapping of the prime minister in their examination of their own records.

In response to questions about the sex-tape scandal that led former main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal to step down in 2010, gendarmerie authorities noted that in today’s world it was possible for almost anybody to engage in illegal eavesdropping activity. 

Yet the case concerning Baykal seemed to have been “very professionally conducted,” the same authorities added. Baykal resigned from his post in the party after the tape scandal.

Parliament’s Eavesdropping Examination Commission was formed in late January with support from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), the CHP and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) for the purpose of outlining and preventing violations of privacy and freedom of communication.

Wire-trapping device in Erdoğan’s office

Illegal eavesdropping became a popular topic of debate after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made public on Dec. 21 that wiretapping devices had been found in his home office.

March/14/2013

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mara mcglothin

3/18/2013 9:54:29 PM

BRIT IN TUrkey Yeah, big brother is watching. OMG!

Brit in Turkey

3/15/2013 7:26:20 PM

mara: 1984?

mara mcglothin

3/15/2013 3:34:23 PM

Exactly MURAT If Turkey actually had a "rule of law" then these recordings would not be admissable in any court of law. Why is everyone so concerned with what other people are doing???

cezer "çapulcu" skonore

3/14/2013 10:11:20 PM

Which makes 120 wiretapping per day. Listening/recording is one thing and processing is another. I bet majority of these calls are not processed because Turkish gov't officials cannot do anything 120 times a day for 11 years.

Murat

3/14/2013 9:11:35 PM

Frankly, we have a culture and a state that has little regard for individual freedoms and consequently privacy.
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