ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turks faced fresh difficulties in accessing the Internet on Saturday after the government blocked access to Twitter, the site where tweets on a corruption scandal have angered Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan.
Twitter was blocked late on Thursday, hours after Erdogan vowed to “wipe out” the social media service. Leading international condemnation, the White House said the Twitter ban undermined democracy and free speech.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen said a crackdown on his followers by Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan was “ten times worse” than anything meted out after coups by the secularist military.
Erdogan has accused Gulen’s Hizmet (“Service”) network, which has built quiet influence in the police and judiciary over decades, of orchestrating a graft investigation which has grown into one of the biggest challenges of his 11-year rule.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan condemned anti-government protesters on Thursday as “charlatans” bent on sowing chaos in the run-up to local elections after Turkey’s worst civil unrest since mass protests last summer.
Two people died during protests on Wednesday, including a police officer in eastern Turkey who suffered a heart attack and a 22-year-old man shot in Istanbul in an apparent stand-off with a group of anti-government protesters.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan accused protesters on Thursday of trying to sow chaos to influence local elections after Turkey’s worst day of civil unrest since anti-government demonstrations swept the nation last summer.
Late on Wednesday, a man in Istanbul was shot dead and a police officer in eastern Turkey suffered a fatal heart attack. Erdogan said demonstrators had “burned and destroyed” offices of his ruling AK Party in Istanbul.
ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) – Protesters clashed with police in cities across Turkey on Tuesday after the death of a 15-year-old boy who was hit in the head by a tear-gas canister during anti-government demonstrations last summer.
Police unleashed water cannon and tear gas on thousands of demonstrators, another pre-election headache for Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan as he battles a corruption scandal that has become one of the biggest challenges of his decade in power.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Former army chief Ilker Basbug was released from a life sentence following a court decision on Friday, adding to uncertainty over the fate of court cases trying coup plots against Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan.
The decision to release the former general came after Thursday’s constitutional court ruling that Basbug’s incarceration for his alleged role in the ‘Ergenekon’ conspiracy to overthrow the government violated his rights, as the court trying him had failed to publish a detailed verdict on the case.
DIYARBAKIR, Turkey, March 7 (Reuters) – The face of jailed
Kurdish rebel chief Abdullah Ocalan briefly beamed down from
billboards in southeast Turkey until police tore down the
posters, a mark of official unease over his enduring influence
among Kurds as local elections loom.
Ocalan’s supporters see the vote as a make-or-break moment
for stalled peace talks aimed at ending 30 years of conflict
between Ocalan’s separatist fighters and the Turkish state.
ISTANBUL, March 7 (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan
has threatened to ban Facebook and YouTube in Turkey in
an attempt to stop political foes anonymously posting audio
recordings purportedly exposing corruption and other
malpractices in his inner circle.
In the latest recording, released on YouTube late Thursday,
Erdogan is purportedly heard berating a newspaper owner over the
telephone about an article and suggesting the journalists be
sacked, in comments that will further stoke concerns over media
freedom and Erdogan’s authoritarian style of leadership.
ISTANBUL, March 5 (Reuters) – Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip
Erdogan, embroiled in a scandal over leaked voice recordings,
said on Wednesday his sensitive conversations with other world
leaders may have been tapped as part of a campaign by his
political enemies to discredit him.
Erdogan is locked in a power struggle with U.S.-based
Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, a former ally he says is behind
a stream of “fabricated” recordings aired on the Internet and
purportedly revealing corruption in his inner circle.
ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Roberto Mancini rates Chelsea narrow favorites to reach the Champions League quarter-finals despite Galatasaray finishing the better side in the first-leg 1-1 draw.
The Turkish side’s manager was relieved his open tactics in the first 25 minutes on Wednesday did not result in more than the one goal his team conceded.