Great news! Even if the court's decision isn't implemented by the current
Turkish government, it is important to have established that the block was
a violation of constitutional principles.


On Thu, Dec 26, 2019 at 4:40 PM Katherine Maher <>

> Hi all,
> I have some good news to share with you all -- after nearly three years of
> Wikipedia being blocked in Turkey, the Turkish Constitutional Court has
> ruled that this is unconstitutional. We hope that access will be restored
> soon in light of this ruling, and will keep you updated as we hear further
> developments.
> Please join me in congratulating the Wikimedia community in Turkey, the
> millions of Wikipedia readers in Turkey, and all of those struggling under
> censorship around the world, on this critical affirmation of the
> fundamental right to knowledge.
> Imposed in April of 2017, the block has prevented the 80+ million people
> in Turkey from accessing and participating in all language versions of
> Wikipedia. It also prevented members of our community in Turkey from freely
> engaging with the projects and impaired our movement’s global effort to
> represent the sum of all knowledge.
> As many of you might recall, we had filed an urgent application to the
> European Court of Human Rights in April 2019. Our petition on the legality
> of the access ban is currently before the ECHR and we are evaluating our
> next steps based on this latest ruling.
> A team from within and outside the Wikimedia Foundation has been working
> diligently since the block was instituted to restore full access in Turkey.
> Throughout this process, we have been guided by our Wikimedia values and a
> belief that Wikipedia must be accessible in its entirety; with no
> censorship of any kind to be tolerated. We worked closely with Wikimedia
> community members in Turkey to understand and act in a way that reflected
> their needs, wishes, and local context. We also benefited greatly from
> conversations with experts around the world.
> We will be posting more information on the Foundation website soon. In the
> meantime, I wanted to offer my sincere appreciation and admiration to the
> members of our community in Turkey -- you have shown great integrity,
> courage, and dedication. Your unwavering commitment to the Wikimedia
> projects, despite the obstacles placed in front of you, is an inspiration
> to us all.
> Thank you to every Wikimedia community member around the world who showed
> support for the Turkish community. Your commitment to our sense of
> community and the strength of our global movement is an inspiration.
> Finally, I would also like to thank the many Foundation staff and others
> involved over the past months for your exceptional diligence,
> professionalism, and tact in handling a delicate situation.
> While this is a favorable ruling for our case in Turkey, it remains to be
> seen whether the Turkish government will indeed restore access in Turkey.
> And serious threats to free knowledge remain around the world. Today's
> ruling is a reminder of the work we still left to do.
> But at this moment, let us celebrate this important recognition that the
> right to information is fundamental to every human, with happy anticipation
> of the return of Turkey to our global community of editors, readers, and
> knowledge seekers.
> Katherine
> --
> Katherine Maher (she/her)
> Executive Director
> Wikimedia Foundation <>
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