Power of militias reinforced, online censorship … A summer of freedom in Turkey

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STORY – A law strengthening the powers of now armed neighborhood militias, in June, succeeded, in July, in Parliament, a project that increases the surveillance of power on social networks.

Since June 11, the “bekçi”, a local police force, can arrest individuals to check or search them, but also to carry and use a firearm.
Since June 11, the “bekci”, a local police force, can arrest individuals to check or search them, but also to carry and use a firearm. Burhan Ozbilici / AP

Correspondent in Istanbul

With his face buried in both hands, Deniz, 32, scrolls through his smartphone the scattered images of his world before: the extended trial of an activist friend, the hunt for journalists across the country, the dismissal of elected mayors of the Prokurdish opposition party. “And then, with the Covid, it’s as if we had suddenly pressed the“ pause ”button. Everyone at home. Courts closed. Life in slow motion. In terms of the fight against the pandemic, Turkey has fared better than many countries. But with the deconfinement, it is another virus which threatens our world according to: that of the acceleration of the authoritarian drift “, laments the young democratic activist. His large green eyes surrounded by black betray nights that are too short and restless. “Since the beginning of June, I have not found any sleep”, she concedes.

She has her reasons to be worried. On June 11, a particularly controversial law caught activists by surprise

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https://www.lefigaro.fr/international/pouvoir-des-milices-renforce-censure-en-ligne-un-ete-liberticide-en-turquie-20200730

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