Turkey appears to be in vanguard of throttling social media after attacks

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  • Friday, 08 Jul 2016

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan prays for the airport employees who were killed in Tuesday's attack on the airport, during his visit to Ataturk airport in Istanbul, Turkey, July 2, 2016. Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Palace/Handout via REUTERS

SAN FRANCISCO/ISTANBUL: After suicide bombers killed 45 people at Istanbul's main airport last week, the Turkish government appeared to take a step that has become increasingly common around the world in moments of political uncertainty: restricting access to Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. 

Turkey denies that it blocks the Internet, blaming outages last week and earlier this year on spikes in usage after major events. But technical experts at watchdog groups say the blackouts on social media are intentional, aimed in part at stopping the spread of militant images and propaganda. 

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