Turkey Bans Scientist's Website Following Complaints By Turkish Creationist


U.K. media has reported that noted scientist Richard Dawkins’s website has been banned in Turkey after a Muslim creationist claimed the contents were insulting to him. According to the report:

Adnan Oktar complained that Mr Dawkins, a fierce critic of creationism and intelligent design, had insulted him in comments made on forums and blogs. Istanbul’s second criminal court of peace has now forbidden internet users to access the site because it “violated” Mr Oktar. Mr Oktar’s press assistant, Seda Aral, said: “We are not against freedom of speech or expression but you cannot insult people. We found the comments hurtful. It was not a scientific discussion. There was a line and the limit has been passed. We have used all the legal means to stop this site. We asked them to remove the comments but they did not.” Mr Oktar is a household name in Turkey after publishing hundreds of books, pamphlets and DVDs to contest Darwin’s theory of evolution. Mr Oktar complained that he and his creationist book Atlas of Creation had been defamed by comments made by Mr Dawkins on the site. Mr Dawkins had written on his site: “I am at a loss to reconcile the expensive and glossy production values of this book with the breathtaking inanity of the content.” It is illegal to criticise either Ataturk or Turkishness in Turkey. However Mr Oktar failed to ban Mr Dawkins’ book The God Delusion, which claims religious scripture is unreliable, after a Turkish court rejected his claims that it insulted religion. But Mr Oktar, who writes under the pen name Harun Yahya, has been successful in persuading courts to ban other websites that he claims are libellous. In August 2007 a court to blocked access to WordPress.com and last April it banned Google Groups after both were complained about by Mr Oktar.

Mr. Oktar’s works are often promoted on websites belonging to global Muslim Brotherhood organizations and Reuters recently posted and extensive profile on him calling him “one of the most widely distributed authors in the Muslim world.” Other Brotherhood organizations are promoting “Islamic creationism” such as the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) which recently featured an exhibit from Turkey’s Creation Museum and whose website promotes the works of Mr. Oktar.

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