U.S. Senators Chris Murphy and Ron Johnson have introduced a resolution condemning the Turkish government for blocking the social media sites Twitter and YouTube, and restricting freedom of expression Hurriyet Daily News reported.
"The touchstone of a modern and legitimate democracy is the freedom of expression enjoyed by its people. In 2014, a fundamental expression of that freedom is a people's access to social media sites that allow them to share information and contribute to a conversation about the world around them," said Murphy, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Affairs.
"By allowing sites like Twitter and YouTube to remain blocked, Prime Minister Erdoğan is defying an order from his very own courts. If the Turkish government wishes to move toward eventual integration into the European Union, they should reverse course and respect the right of the Turkish people to exercise their basic democratic freedoms," he added.
Johnson, Ranking Member of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Affairs, said the government's attempt to control what its citizens learn about their leaders was a reminded of how crucial freedom of speech is.
"It also reminds us how cautious we must be about any changes in the oversight of Internet governance. The ability of any private citizen to compete openly in offering information to others has made the Internet one of the greatest deregulatory success stories of all time. The Turkish shutdown of Twitter and YouTube for political purposes shows the danger of foreign governments gaining control over this incredible forum for liberty," he said.
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