Protesters to march against law curbing Internet
Similar demonstrations staged in 2011 with the slogan 'don’t touch to my internet.' DHA photoSocial media users and activists have called for a protest to denounce Parliament’s adoption of a new law that will allow further limitations on the Internet.
An omnibus bill that includes the controversial law was approved by Parliament on Jan. 16 as many groups, including Turkey’s top business association TÜSİAD, slammed the government’s move as an attempt to curb individual freedoms.
The association Sayfalar Ortak Platformu, which comprises a number of Facebook pages based on activism, has called for a protest “to say no to Internet censorship” and will be held in Istanbul’s Istiklal Avenue Jan. 18 at 6 p.m.
Campaigns and calls circulated on social media with the hashtag #sansüredurde (say no censorship).
Similar demonstrations staged in 2011 to denounce the authorities’ grip on the internet in the previous years with the slogan “don’t touch to my internet” had attracted thousands of protesters.
Among other websites, Turkey drew international criticism for banning access to YouTube for over two years, drawing huge criticism inside and outside the country.
Critics say the law will enhance monitoring any internet user’s activities, as well as allow officials to limit keywords more easily. It will also give the head of Turkey’s Directorate of Telecommunication (TİB) enough authority to directly limit access, pending a court ruling.
Transport and Communication Minister Lütfi Elvan had dismissed the “censorship” accusations, arguing similar regulations existed in many Western countries. He also assured that pages will be blocked only when there is a violation on privacy.