Access to Speak Up Platform story blocked again

Access to a news story published on Speak Up Platform’s website about the denial of access to news about Aktif Bank’s bank transfers as revealed by the FinCEN files was also blocked on grounds that it “violated personal rights’

Access was blocked to the news story published on on 30 September about the denial of access to news on DW Turkish, TELE1, and Courthouse News Service regarding the files of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) of the US Department of Treasury that unearth the money laundering traffic between countries and the role of banks therein. The reason given for the access block was that the news item ‘violated personal rights’.

Ahmet Özel, an attorney acting on behalf of Berat Albayrak, complained to the Istanbul 1st Penal Court of Peace about more than thirty news websites, including Speak Up Platform. Looking into the claim, the court judged in its ruling of 2 October 2020 no. 2020/6052 that the relevant content should be banned from access. The ruling was passed on to the Access Providers Association.

In the decision notified to our platform by the Access Providers Association, it was requested that access to the relevant news story on the Speak Up Platform website be blocked in accordance with the law no. 5651. It was also stated that a fine would be imposed should the relevant content not be taken down in the specified period.

The full text of the notification from the association to our side is as follows:

Dear Officer,

The Access Providers Association was established by article 6/A of the law no. 5651.

“In accordance with article 3 of the law no. 5651; those who carry out the activities covered by this Law from within or outside the country may be notified via electronic mail or other communication tools through information obtained from sources such as communication tools on internet pages, domain names, IP addresses, and similar resources.

Article 9 of the law no. 5651 states that “…Decisions by the judge to remove the content and/or to block access under the scope of this article are sent directly to the Association… The judge’s decision becomes automatically void if the content, which was subject to access blocking, is removed from publication…The decision to remove the content and/or to block access issued to the relevant content, hosting, and access provider by the Access Providers Association shall be implemented immediately and within four hours of notification by the relevant content, hosting, and access provider… The person in charge of the content, hosting and access who does not fulfil the decision of the judge of the court of peace in accordance with the conditions stated in this article and in line with the applicable period of time, shall be punished with an administrative fine from five hundred days up to three thousand days.”

In this respect, we request that our Association be notified upon the removal from publication of the content specified in the ruling of İSTANBUL ANATOLIAN SIDE 1ST PENAL COURT OF PEACE of 2 October 2020 and no. 2020/6052D.