Erdogan says Turkey may ban Facebook and YouTube

Friday 07 March 2014 14.51
Tayyip Erdogan giving an interview via YouTube in 2009
Tayyip Erdogan giving an interview via YouTube in 2009

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has said Turkey could ban Facebook and YouTube, which he says have been abused by his political enemies.

The ban could come into effect after local elections on 30 March.

Mr Erdogan is engaged in a power struggle with US-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen.

The prime minister said his former ally is behind a stream of "fabricated" audio recordings posted on the internet allegedly revealing corruption in his inner circle.

"We are determined on this subject. We will not leave this nation at the mercy of YouTube and Facebook," Mr Erdogan said in a late night interview with Turkish broadcaster ATV.

Asked if the possible barring of these sites was included in his planned measures, he said: "Included".

Mr Erdogan said the release of his purported conversations is part of a campaign to discredit him.

Mr Gulen denies any involvement in the recordings and rejects allegations that he is using a network of protégés to try to influence politics in Turkey.