Terrorist massacre and government censorship in Turkey

This 10 October 2015 video shows a demonstration in Paris, France, protesting against the terrorist massacre in Ankara, Turkey.

On Sunday afternoon, there will be more solidarity demonstrations in France: here.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Ankara terror attack: Turkey censors media coverage of bombings as Twitter and Facebook ‘blocked’

The government has issued a ban on broadcasting footage of the blast at a peace rally

Lizzie Dearden

Saturday 10 October 2015 15:57 BST

The Turkish government has censored news coverage of the terror attack in Ankara as Twitter and other social media sites went down across the country.

State media watchdog the Turkish Supreme Board of Radio and Television (RTÜK) imposed a ban on broadcasting images of the blast.

A statement by RTÜK released on its official website said that; “The Turkish Prime Minister has imposed a temporary broadcast ban regarding the terror attack conducted in Ankara this morning.”

A government spokesperson said the order covered images showing the moment of the blast, gruesome or bloody images or those “that create a feeling of panic”.

He warned media organisations they could face a “full blackout” if they did not comply.

Meanwhile, Turks reported that Twitter had been blocked on some of the country’s most popular networks, including Turkcell and TTNET.

Some people also said they were unable to access Facebook in the wake of the blasts.

Social media blackouts have been imposed with increasing frequency in Turkey in recent years, sparking protests and international criticism.

Index on Censorship classes the country as only “partly free” and the British Government has been among those raising concerns about blocks on social media and the treatment of journalists.

An award-winning Turkish journalist is being prosecuted for “insulting” the President and two Britons were among three Vice News journalists charged with “aiding a terrorist organisation” in August, prompting an intervention by the Foreign Secretary.

Anger was mounting at the government’s response to the bombing, which could be the deadliest terror attack in Turkey’s history.

Selami Altinok, the Interior Minister, refused to resign when questioned by journalists after the bombing and insisted that there were no security flaws.

Hundreds of people were gathering for a peace rally, organised by trade unions and supported by the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP), when two explosions hit the crowd.

Footage showed a line of men and women holding hands while doing a traditional dance and singing as the explosions started, sending people screaming and running for cover.

They struck 50 metres apart as hundreds of people gathered near Ankara Central Station for a rally denouncing the violence between Turkish security forces and Kurdish militants.

In a statement, the HDP said it believed its supporters were the “main target of the attacks” and criticised police for allegedly tear gassing survivors who were trying to help the injured.

The health ministry put the death toll at 86, with at least 186 people wounded, by Saturday afternoon.

Ankara terror attack: Protesters clash with police after ambulances ‘blocked’ following explosions. Protesters claimed police prevented ambulances taking the wounded to hospital in the wake of the bombing: here.

Ankara explosions: Video captures moment bomb goes off as singing protesters call for peace: here.

Ankara attacks: innocent hearts beating for peace are brutally stopped. World must hear call of countless people in Turkey who are determined to defend peace and democracy, says award-winning novelist Elif Shafak: here.

Ankara explosions: Isis emerge as suspects as death toll rises to 95: here.

Ankara explosions: Mourners chant anti-government slogans as death toll rises to 128: here.

Turkey bomb blasts: government blamed as thousands take to streets in Ankara. Mourners and protesters gather in Turkish capital, blaming Erdoġan’s government for twin bomb attacks in which over 100 civilians died: here.

[Kurdish] PKK, not Islamic State, is Erdogan’s real target: here.

16 thoughts on “Terrorist massacre and government censorship in Turkey

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