| 22 Mar 2023
Youtube ban in Turkey lifted after two months by court

MUMBAI: After being banned for a little over two months, Youtube is now back online in Turkey. The video sharing site was blocked by the Turkish government late in March 2014, barely a week after it made Twitter unavailable in the country as well. However, the ban was declared unconstitutional by a Turkish court.

On Tuesday, the site was once again made accessible to Turkish netizens, after the uppermost legal body in the country- the Constitutional Court of Turkey ended the ban. According to reports, the court lifted the ban by stating that it violated the freedom of expression clause from Turkey's constitution which states "everyone has the right to express and disseminate his/her thoughts and opinions by speech, in writing or in pictures or through other media."

The site was blocked in Turkey on 27 March after an anonymous user posted what was alleged to be an audio recording of a meeting between the country’s intelligence chief, foreign minister, top military and foreign ministry officials. According to reports, the recording supposedly includes a discussion on security matters related to Syria.

The decision to lift the Youtube ban comes as a huge blow to Turkey Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has previously expressed his intention of internet censorship. A week prior to the Youtube ban, the Turkish government banned micro-blogging site Twitter, after which Erdogan revealed he wanted to completely "eradicate" the social network. However, that ban was ended early last month by the high court. Although Erdogan did not respect the decision, he said that his government would comply with it.