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Erdogan: Turkey Could Ban Facebook and YouTube

FILE - Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses lawmakers in Ankara, Turkey.
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey could ban Facebook and YouTube, which he claims have been abused by his political enemies, after local elections on March 30.

Erdogan is locked in a power struggle with the U.S.-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, a former ally who Erdogan claims is behind a stream of "fabricated" audio recordings posted on the Internet allegedly revealing corruption in his inner circle.

"We are determined on this subject. We will not leave this nation at the mercy of YouTube and Facebook," Erdogan said in a late night interview with the Turkish broadcaster ATV.

Asked if the possible barring of these sites was included in his planned measures, he said: "Included."

Erdogan said the release of his purported conversations is part of a campaign to discredit him. Gulen denies any involvement in the recordings, and rejects allegations that he is using a network of protégés to try to influence politics in Turkey.