Twitter blocks access to tweets by Today’s Zaman editors for ‘insulting’ PM

Twitter has blocked access two tweets by two top editors of Today’s Zaman daily over Turkish court decisions which ruled that the posts contained “insults” at Prime Minister Ahmet DavutoIlu. DavutoIlu has recently sued Today’s Zaman Editor-in-Chief of Today’s Zaman Bulent KeneI and Managing Editor Celil SaIIr over tweets they wrote, the latest in a series of similar cases filed against journalists in Turkey.

  The two

Twitter has blocked access two tweets by two top editors of Todayand#39s Zaman daily over Turkish court decisions which ruled that the posts contained andldquoinsultsandrdquo at Prime Minister Ahmet DavutoIlu.

DavutoIlu has recently sued Todayand#39s Zaman Editor-in-Chief of Todayand#39s Zaman Banduumllent KeneI and Managing Editor Celil SaIIr over tweets they wrote, the latest in a series of similar cases filed against journalists in Turkey.

The two journalists received case documents, including formal allegations and copies of Twitter messages they had written criticizing DavutoIlu, on Tuesday. The legal complaint had been filed on Dec.

29, 2014. On Wednesday, Twitterand#39s legal team informed KeneI that it withheld access to one of his tweets which a Turkish court ruled contained insults at DavutoIlu.

Twitter said an appeal filed by Twitter against the ruling to block access to his tweets has been rejected by an upper court. In the tweet, KeneI criticized DavutoIluand#39s failure to take independent decisions from President Recep Tayyip ErdoIan.

andldquoWe can soon hear statements [from DavutoIlu] saying andlsquoI lost my ID, it Is is null and void,andrdquo he wrote. Twitter has also blocked access to some Twitter posts by SaIIr for andldquoinsulting a public servant.

andrdquo SaIIrand#39s two popular Twitter accounts had been earlier suspended by Twitter after a Turkish court ruled the accountsand#39 content allegedly andquottarnished the reputationandquot of government officials.

Also on Dec.

29 of last year, KeneI, SaIIr and Sevgi AkarandccedileIme, who also a columnist for the Zaman daily, were sued in a move that has only contributed to the sense that media freedom in Turkey is deteriorating. However, these journalists were only informed about the case on Feb.

12, when they received documents including allegations and copies of their Twitter messages critical of DavutoIlu.

Media freedom in Turkey has been rapidly declining in the past few years and there seems to be no end in sight to a troubling trend that silenced most of the countryand#39s media Freedom House ranked Turkey as andquotnot freeandquot in its latest Press Freedom Index and leading press aocacy bodies labeled Turkey as a country where practicing journalism is dangerous.

Earlier this year, Todayand#39s Zaman correspondent Mahir Zeynalov was kicked out of the country for allegedly andquotinsulting state dignitariesandquot on Twitter He tweeted that the andquotTurkish Republic has never seen such a harmful leader May God save the country from his evils,andquot referring to ErdoIan. ErdoIan has also pressed charges against the newspaperand#39s editor-in-chief KeneI over his tweets.

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SOURCE: Today’s Zaman