On Thursday night Erdogan announced that, following a court order, Twitter was now disabled in the country.
“We’ll eradicate Twitter. I don’t care what the international community says. Everyone will witness the power of the Turkish Republic,” he said.
The move follows the posting – and widespread sharing – of voice recordings and documents on Twitter that appear to provide evidence of widespread corruption.
According to Forbes, the leaks come from two users: one named Haramzadeler, meaning ‘sons of thieves’, and the other Bascalan, or ‘prime thief’.
In one, Erdogan is heard warning his son to remove a quantity of suspect cash from his and other houses, following the news that the police were raiding premises as part of a wide-ranging corruption investigation.
Erdogan has claimed that the recording is a fake.
However, President Abdullah Gul, a political ally of Erdogan’s, was among those who opposed the order though in a series of tweets. “I hope this implementation won’t last long,” he wrote.
The move has backfired
Even though Turkey’s Twitter was disabled, the hashtag #TwitterisblockedinTurkey went viral as Twitter is still accessible via the site’s SMS service, which allows Turks to text in a tweet.
From across the world last night, thousands of Twitter users dispatched outraged – sometimes hilarious – updates and photos touching upon feelings of dismay, humor and resignation.
As in other countries, social media played a major role in the protests, which included as many as 3.5 million people in a nation of 81 million.
Erdogan was outraged and called all social media the “worst menace to society”.
Source: The Washington post