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POLITICS > No drop in number of tweets despite ban, #TwitterisblockedinTurkey becomes TT

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Users have got around the access ban and entered Twitter via VPN tunnels.

Users have got around the access ban and entered Twitter via VPN tunnels.

The number of messages tweeted by users in Turkey has not dropped since access to Twitter was banned, statistics have shown. What’s more, the hashtags #TwitterisblockedinTurkey and #TurkeyBlockedTwitter became trending topics worldwide only a few hours after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced his intention to “wipe out” the microblogging website.

According a report from Twitturk, which records the statistics of Turkish Twitter users, over half a million tweets were posted in just 10 hours, despite the ban.

That number would mark no sharp fall from the average number of tweets posted in the country, which is around 1.8 million per day.

Most users therefore seem to have got around the access ban and entered Twitter via VPN tunnels.

The ban comes on the heels of damaging revelations following the corruption probe and the successive release of phone conversations of government officials, including Prime Minister Erdoğan.

Some observers have interpreted the decision to ban Twitter as an attempt to prevent further damaging leaks ahead of the March 30 local polls.

However, Erdoğan said the government undertook such measure “for the sake of its citizens.”

“I don’t care what the international community says. Everyone will witness the power of the Turkish Republic’s state,” he added.

March/21/2014

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