Turkish court dismisses appeal on restoring access to Wikipedia

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A Turkish court has refused to restore access to the website of Wikipedia, blocked by the country’s authorities in late April, local media reported Friday.

According to pro-government daily Yeni Safak, an appeal by the non-profit and charitable organisation Wikimedia was rejected by an Ankara court.

On 29 April, Turkey’s Information and Communication Technologies Authority said that access to the Wikipedia website was blocked in the country after an analysis and consideration based on the country’s legislation regarding internet regulation. According to the ministry, several articles published on Wikipedia portrayed Turkey as a country coordinating its efforts with various terrorist groups.

The Turkish authorities vowed to restore access to Wikipedia if the website removed the controversial content.

Turkey’s crackdown on journalists and restrictions on freedom of speech has been condemned by the international community, including the United Nations, the United States, the European Union, Russia and the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) organisation. Turkey ranks 151th out of 180 countries in the RSF 2017 press freedom index.