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Turkey's internet authority blocks access to Youtube

27 March 2014 19:15 (Last updated 27 March 2014 23:12)
- Foreign ministry calls leaking of a wiretapped security meeting a 'national security threat'

ANKARA 

Turkey's telecommunications authority (TIB) has announced an 'administrative' block on video-sharing website Youtube, where a leaked security meeting of high-ranking Turkish officials appeared on Thursday.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry called the leak a “threat” against Turkey’s national security.

The leaked recording features a confidential meeting between Turkey's intelligence agency chief Hakan Fidan, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Deputy Chief of General Staff Yasar Guler.

The meeting was apparently about possible threats against a Turkish territory in Aleppo, Syria -- home to a symbolically-important tomb.

In a written notice it sent to TIB, the ministry said the content “poses an imminent threat against our national security.”

“It is important to restrict access to this website (Youtube) and others which may have the same content," the ministry said, designating links to fifteen videos on Youtube.

Blocking access to YouTube precautionary measure: minister

Turkey’s Science, Industry and Technology Minister Fikri Isik said Thursday that the shutting down of YouTube was "a precautionary measure and an administrative decision.”

He added that “the foreign ministry has made the necessary statement. There is nothing to say after that."

Isik was speaking to journalists in the Altinova district of Yalova after Turkey blocked access to YouTube following the release of recordings concerning a security meeting over possible threats to Turkish territory in Aleppo, Syria.  

The area, where the tomb of Suleyman Shah is located, is currently under threat due to the escalation in fighting between the Syrian opposition and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, in the area.

Turkey's broadcast regulator imposes ban on security meeting leak

Turkey's broadcast regulator RTUK imposed a temporary broadcast ban on a wiretapped security meeting between high-ranking Turkish officials leaked online on Thursday.

RTUK said in a written statement that it decided to ban broadcasts temporarily about the wiretapping of the confidential meeting between Turkey's intelligence agency chief Hakan Fidan, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Deputy Chief of General Staff Yasar Guler, according to the Article 7 of Law No 6112 on the Establishment of Radio and Television Enterprises and Their Broadcasts.

The meeting was apparently about possible threats against a Turkish territory in Aleppo, Syria -- home to a symbolically-important tomb.

The tomb of Suleyman Shah is currently under threat due to the escalation in fighting between the Syrian opposition and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, in the area.

Protected by Turkish troops, the tomb -- Turkey's only exclave -- and the surrounding area are located in Aleppo's Manbij district, approximately 30 km from the Turkish border.

Espionage investigation into leaked wiretappings

Ankara's Chief Prosecutor has launched an espionage investigation into the wiretapped security meeting.

The investigation into the wiretapping of a meeting involving high level Turkish state authorities discussing the threats against Turkish territory in Syria will be run by the Office of Crimes Against the Constitution.

The office was established recently to look into crimes of terrorism, espionage, and crimes against national security, constitutional order and national defense.

englishnews@aa.com.tr

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