Turkey’s highest court rules YouTube ban unconstitutional

Turkey’s Constitutional Court on Thursday ruled that the ban on YouTube is unconstitutional, which should lead to the two-month ban being lifted, after the government cut off the video-sharing website owned by Google Inc. for publishing leaked state secrets just days before critical March elections, ‘WSJ online’ reports.

The Court in Ankara sided 14-to-2 with individual appeals filed by Google’s local lawyer, opposition lawmakers and the Union of Turkish Bar Associations, ruling that blocking YouTube breached freedom of expression, according to the ruling published on its website.

Judges will now send a detailed ruling to Turkey’s TIB telecommunications watchdog and the Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications Ministry for implementation.

A ruling to lift the ban issued by a lower court has to date, been ignored by the Turkish government. YouTube still remained inaccessible late Thursday.

The Communications Ministry declined to comment, while TIB couldn’t be reached after regular business hours.

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