Turkish Minister of Transport, Maritime Affairs, & Communications Binali Yildirim on Thursday said, "It is ruthless to blame a government that has such a great vision with restricting social media and freedoms. The solution is not banning it but the social media, the mainstream and local media to establish their own ethical values."
Yildirim delivered a speech at the 24th meeting of Local and Regional Media organized by Turkey's Directorate General of Press and Information.
Stating that national and international media "failed to give a successful test" in Gezi Park protests, Yildirim said, "Social media cannot be banned, it is an area of freedom. When we are expressing this so openly, some people still prefer to twist it as if we would bring restrictions on the social media. I find this attitude unethical."
"Social media isn't hassle-free. If there is a crime it is crime both in real life and in cyber space. The European Council Convention on Cyber Crimes to which Turkey is signatory country is about to be approved at the Parliament in the upcoming days. This is the only and most important international agreement punishing crimes committed on cyber space."
Turkish government officials have previously contacted social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook, requesting their cooperation in its probe into anti-government protests.Twitter was among those solicited, but it hadn't welcome the proposal while Facebook said in a statement Wednesday that it had not provided Turkish authorities any user data.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan had earlier said "The best examples of lies can be found there. To me, social media is the worst menace to society" when commenting on the extensive use of social networks by protesters in Gezi Park demonstrations.