Foreign and EU ministers to visit Brussels for EU bid
EU Affairs Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu (R) and EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Füle meet in Brussels in this file photo. CİHAN photoTurkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and EU Affairs Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu will meet EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Füle and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton today in Brussels for a Turkey-EU political dialogue meeting. A new law adopted by Turkish lawmakers last week, which will tighten Internet controls, is expected to be a topic during the meeting since the EU has criticized the legislation.
The new Internet law permits a government agency, the Telecommunications Communications Presidency (TIB), to block access to websites without a court order if they are deemed to violate privacy or have content seen as “insulting.” “This law is raising serious concerns here. The law in its current form introduces several restrictions on freedom of expression,” Commission spokesman Peter Stano said last week.
Asked about the recent criticisms from the EU about the Internet law, Davutoğlu stressed that “ethics” were necessary for the Internet as well.
“The essence is freedom, but freedom should respect human rights through legislation for ethics,” he said.
Davutoğlu said some Western countries criticized practices of the Turkish government such as police intervention into protests and judicial arrangements, but those countries themselves conducted similar policies.
The minister cited protests in Germany’s Hamburg province and the German police’s reaction to the demonstrators.