The killing of innocent people in Turkey today has left all peace-lovers sad again. Close to 90 people were killed and many others left wounded in the bomb blasts that struck what was meant to be a peace rally. And on that top of it all comes Turkish government’s censorship of social media with first-hand records of the terror.
The Independent is one of the few media sources that have reported on the Turkish government’s move to block popular social media sites – Facebook and Twitter – to prevent people from seeing the images and videos of the blasts that ripped through the peace rally in Ankara earlier today.
That Erdogan is a radical Islamist-minded ruler is no revelation to those who keep an eye of the politics of that region. Since his term began as the country’s President last year, Turkey’s people have been denied freedom of information and expression, targeting social media sites particularly that voice the concerns and protests of the government’s policies and failures.
Blocking access to information and freedom of expression is the primary means of dictatorial control exercised by mock democratic systems, as Erdogan’s Turkey. The not-so-hidden agenda always is shielding the ruling dictator’s interest under the cliché of “prevention of panic”. While the terror attack caused momentarily panic among the unfortunate crowd, the practice of censorship is – and should be – the potential source of a longer-lasting panic over having been chained.