Adnan Oktar, the name behind the closing of many internet sites in Turkey, threatens bianet: ‘There is an insulting article, take it off the internet or we will have you banned like Richard Dawkin’s site.’ There is no insult, so we are not taking it off!
Bia news center – İstanbul, 29-10-2008
Adnan Oktar, the name behind the closing of most of the internet sites in Turkey, has threatened bianet, too.
Claiming he was insulted and slandered through an article criticizing the internet bannings from the legal perspective, which appeared in bianet.org, Adnan Oktar (Adnan Hodja) announced that he was planning to go to court if the said article was not taken off the site.
Giving bianet a warning yesterday on behalf of their clients, Oktar’s lawyers reminded that they had managed to get sites such as wordpress.com, richarddawkins.net, egitimsen.org.tr, groups.google and gazetevatan.com banned previously.
Lawyers Kerim Kalkan and Ceyhun Aydoğan stated in the warning they sent to bianet that they were planning to go to court if the said article was not removed within 24 hours.
Meeting with lawyers about the problem, the bianet administration decided not to take off the said article, since it did not include any insult.
Oktar mistook the critique intended for the court
The article that Oktar thought insulting him was written by Yaman Akdeniz, a faculty from the Law Department of the University of Leeds, and Kerem Altıparmak, a member of the Human Right Center of the Political Science Department of Ankara University, and published by bianet on October 20.
Reminding that up until today 61 sites have been banned by the court orders taken from Silivri and Gebze courts, both Akdeniz and Altıparmak state that the sites were being banned because of a problem in courts’ interpretation methods.
The courts pass over ‘the Law 5651 for the Regulation of the Material in the Internet and the Fight against the Crimes Committed by this Material’ and apply instead the regulations regarding insulting others.
However, the courts should really apply the Law 5651 designed for these matters and this law does not include an arrangements leading to the banning of a site.
Akdeniz and Altıparmak also draw attention to the fact that the banned sites are never given the chance to defend themselves and usually do not know the reasons for their banning.
Oktar’s lawyer Aydoğan did not reply to bianet’s demand that they should give concrete examples regarding their insult allegation.
Oktar is not the only one asking for censorship
In addition to the ones demanded by Oktar, so far the Turkish courts have banned many sites, including sites like YouTube, EksiSözlük, Daily Motion, blogger.com and geocities.com.
Freedem of Expression defenders, academicians, jurist, journalists and internet users, both from Turkey and the international arena, have reacted to the bannings. (EÜ/TB)