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Turkey bans YouTube over security leak

Move follows release of audio file on YouTube, purporting to be of security meeting about military action in Syria.

Last updated: 27 Mar 2014 19:32
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The move against YouTube came a day after a court ordered a suspension of the Twitter ban [Reuters]

Turkey has banned video-sharing website YouTube, having blocked Twitter a week earlier, after both were used to spread audio recordings damaging to the government, local media reported.

The move came hours after the release of an audio file on YouTube, purporting to be of a security meeting in which top government, military and spy officials discuss a possible scenario for military action inside Syria.

Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan Erdogan on Thursday slammed political opponents he said had leaked the audio tape.

"They have leaked something on YouTube today," he told a campaign rally ahead of crucial local elections Sunday, following the latest in a series of damaging social media leaks.

"It was a meeting on our national security ... It is a vile, cowardly, immoral act. We will go into their caves. Who are you serving by eavesdropping?"

The move against YouTube came a day after a court ordered a suspension of the Twitter ban.

The foreign ministry described the latest leak as "espionage" against the country's national security.

It added that it was a "natural practice" by the state to discuss how to protect Turkish property from "terrorist elements" but added that some part of the conversation had been "distorted".

Erdogan, whose party faces key local elections on Sunday, has been dogged by a string of leaks, including apparent wire taps suggesting a major corruption scandal, which have gone viral on Twitter and other social media platforms.

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