Turkish legislators endorse measures to expand government's control over Internet

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ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey's Parliament has approved legislation that would tighten government controls over the Internet.

With a show of hands, the legislators late Wednesday endorsed allowing Turkey's telecommunications authority to block websites for a privacy violation without a prior court decision.

The legislation also would force Internet providers to keep records on Web users' activities for two years and make them available to authorities when requested, without notifying the users.

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists has said the measures would "compound" Turkey's already "dismal" press freedoms. The government has said they would protect privacy and not amount to censorship.

The measures are part of a package of legislation, the rest of which is expected to be approved by Parliament on Thursday and signed into law by the president.

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