The “Twitter” platform is facing sharp criticism against the background of “caving in to the Turkish government’s demand” to restrict some accounts of opposition politicians and content that criticizes Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Turkey, on the eve of the elections, which some critics attributed to protecting deals between the authorities and “SpaceX”, which own it.
Twitter announced, after Turkey threatened to ban it entirely, that “in response to legal action and to ensure that Twitter remains accessible to the people of Turkey, we have taken measures to restrict access to certain content in Turkey today,” according to a tweet to the company’s global government affairs account in English and Turkish on Saturday.
The company added: “We have notified account holders of this action in line with our policy, but this content will remain available in the rest of the world.”
This came after the official Global Government Affairs Twitter account announced that the platform would “restrict access to some content in Turkey” in response to legal requests made by the social networking site.
California Representative Adam Schiff said in a tweet in response to the news: “On the day before a crucial election in Turkey, Twitter seems to be heeding Erdogan’s demands and censoring speech on the platform.” “Given Twitter’s utter lack of transparency, it’s hard to avoid the conclusion that Musk’s promises of free speech have slipped again,” he added.
For his part, Twitter CEO Elon Musk defended the decision on Saturday, tweeting, “The choice is to completely throttle Twitter or restrict access to some tweets…which one do you want?”
The Turkish government previously blocked access to Twitter for a short period last February, following a massive 7.8-magnitude earthquake that killed more than 50,000 people.