United States outraged at Erdogan guards' attack on protesters
- Author: Leroy Wright May 23, 2017,
May 23, 2017, 12:07
Turkey has told the United States it will not join in any military operations that include Kurdish fighters in Syria, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Thursday, while vowing to strike the US -backed Kurds if they threaten Turkey's security.
Mr Erdogan, who met President Donald Trump earlier in the day, was visiting the Turkish ambassador's residence when the scuffle broke out.
Shortly before Erdogan was due to arrive at the Turkish ambassador's residence, members of his notorious security detail pushed past U.S. police and assaulted the protest group.
Police said the fighting outside the Turkish ambassador's residence on Tuesday injured 11 people, including a Washington police officer, and led to two arrests for assault. "The State Department has raised its concerns about these events at the highest levels and a thorough investigation that will allow us to hold the responsible individuals accountable is of the utmost importance to us".
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan watched part of the Washington D.C. protests against him turn into a brawl.
Two men were arrested at the scene, and police intend to pursue charges against others involved, the Metropolitan Police Department said Wednesday.
Mr Erdogan met Trump at the White House on Tuesday, with the two leaders pledging to improve ties between the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies - even as Mr Erdogan gave a stern warning about Washington's arming of Kurdish militia in Syria. John McCain (R-Ariz.) called for the expulsion of Turkey's ambassador to the United States.
He went on to call for a diplomatic response from the U.S. and said the government should press charges against Turkish officials involved in the brawl.
The Turkish Embassy in Washington released a statement Wednesday that made no mention of any role played by the presidential guards but said that a group of Turkish American citizens who had gathered to greet Erdogan "responded in self-defense" to a "provocative demonstration".
A State Department spokeswoman said, referring to the incident, the United States is communicating concerns to Turkey's government "in strongest possible terms".
In their Oval Office meetings Tuesday, Trump did not mention Erdogan's increasingly tight grip on power in Turkey or allegations of irregular elections under his leadership. "This is the United States of America", Sen. Police believe "there could be a diplomatic immunity issue".
A senior Republican senator is calling for Turkey's ambassador to be thrown out of the country in response to violence involving members of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's (REH'-jehp TY'-ihp UR'-doh-wahns) security detail.
The Turkish government placed the blame at the feet of the protesters, claiming that they were affiliated with "terrorist" groups.