Turkey said on Wednesday it had asked Twitter to set up a representative office inside the country, which could give it a tighter rein over the microblogging site it has accused of helping stir weeks of anti-government protests.
While mainstream Turkish media largely ignored the protests during the early days of the unrest, social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook emerged as the main outlets for Turks opposed to the government.
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has described sites likeTwitter as a “scourge” - although senior members of his party are regular users - saying they were used to spread lies about the government with the aim of terrorizing society.
Police detained several dozen people suspected of inciting unrest on social media during the protests, local reports said.
“We have told all social media that ... if you operate in Turkey you must comply with Turkish law,” Transport and Communications Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters.
“When information is requested, we want to see someone in Turkey who can provide this ... there needs to be an interlocutor we can put our grievance to and who can correct an error if there is one,” he said.
While Ankara had no problems with Facebook, which had been working with Turkish authorities for a while and had representatives inside Turkey, Yildirim said it had not seen a” positive approach” from Twitter after Turkey had issued the” necessary warnings” to the site over the matter.
“Twitter will probably comply too. Otherwise this is a situation that cannot be sustained,” he said, without elaborating, but stressed the aim was not to limit social media.
An official at the ministry, who asked not to be named, said the government had asked Twitter to reveal the identities of users who posted messages deemed insulting to the government or prime minister, or which flouted people's personal rights.
It was not immediately clear whether Twitter had responded.
In a statement, Facebook said it had not provided user data to Turkish authorities in response to government requests over the protests and said it was concerned about proposals internet firms may have to provide data more frequently.
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر