Turkish lawmakers have been on the defensive in recent months as the government faces allegations of corruption and authoritarianism. In February the Turkish parliament approved [JURIST report] legislation to heighten Internet restrictions, granting the country's telecommunications authority the ability to block websites or remove content without the court's approval. In December Prime Minister Recep Tayipp Erdogan [BBC backgrounder] named [JURIST report] 10 new members of his cabinet following the resignation of three members under investigation for graft. Also in December a Turkish court rejected [JURIST report] bids to release two members of the parliament for the Kurdish Peace and Democratic Party (BDP), Gulser Yildirim and Ibrahim Ayhan, who have been detained since 2010 when they were each charged with links to the militant Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).
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