Turkey has lifted its ban on YouTube after two years of blocking access to the popular video site.
Back in March 2007, a Turkish court ordered YouTube to be banned in that country because of offensive comments about the founding father of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. This ban was eventually lifted, but videos insulting the founding father caused one new ban after another; YouTube was finally completely blocked in Turkey in May 2008, with the blockade lasting more than two years.
What makes for a high-quality democracy? If we could answer this question satisfactorily, we would be well placed to deal systematically with some of the perennial questions of Turkish politics (what are the country?s democratic shortcomings? which reforms should it prioritise?), and to assess the various proposals for constitutional reform that will be forthcoming in the months and years ahead. Fortunately for us, there?s a growing amount of work being done in this area.
In 2003, Larry Diamond and Leonardo Morlino brought together a group of democratisation experts for a research project on the quality of democracy. The project?s aim was to identify the characteristics that distinguish high-quality from low-quality democracies. In the book that resulted from their project, Assessing the Quality of Democracy, Diamond and Morlino identify eight different dimensions on which democracies vary in quality. In this post, I?ll provide an outline of these eight dimensions of democratic quality. I?ll also add a few observations about aspects of how Turkey performs on each, but my objective here isn?t to be comprehensive by any means.
The National Intelligence Agency informed the court that Dink was warned in a “semi-official appointment” at the Istanbul Governorship. The joint lawyers of the Dink family will apply to re-merge the files of prime suspect Samast and of the main trial.