Turkey to block access to anti-Islam film

September 26, 2012 - 1:35 PM

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A Turkish court issued an order on Wednesday allowing authorities in the country to block Internet access to the anti-Islam movie that has sparked violent protests across the Muslim world, an official said.

Binali Yildirim, the minister in charge of transportation and communications, told state-run TRT television that the injunction allows government telecommunications and information technology authorities to prevent access from Turkey to URL links to the film.

The move came a day after another government minister said Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who heads an Islam-based party, ordered officials to find ways of preventing access to videos of "Innocence of Muslims" movie.

Dozens of people, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya, have been killed in violence linked to protests over the film.

"Henceforth, it will not be shown in our country," said Yildirim, calling the film "disgusting."

"To insult what is sacred, to incite indignation is unacceptable for all religions. It is a hate crime and no crime should go unpunished," Yildirim said. His office said Tuesday that the ministry has also asked Google Inc. and YouTube to remove the videos.

Erdogan has criticized Western nations for not taking steps to prevent insults to Islamic values but also has criticized violent protests against the film saying they harm Islam.

Yildirim said the court order is limited to links to the film and that access to websites that carry the links would not be blocked. Turkey banned access to the video sharing site YouTube from 2008 and 2010 because of videos deemed insulting to the country's founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

Thousands of other websites, most of them pornographic, have also been banned in the country. The government says it is fighting child pornography, illegal gambling and other cybercrimes.