USA decries Washington, DC, brawl during Erdogan's visit

19 Mai, 2017, 22:45 | Author: Claudine Rigal
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The Turkish president was caught on camera observing the violence yesterday.

"We are concerned by the violent incidents involving protestors and Turkish security personnel Tuesday evening".

Police in Washington said the clash "appeared to be a brutal attack on peaceful protesters" and video footage showed men in suits charging past police to kick and punch a group of demonstrators.

Adding to the tension, on Thursday U.S. Senator John McCain called for the expulsion of Turkey's U.S. ambassador after violence erupted between protesters and Turkish security personnel during Erdogan's visit.

However, the State Department did say that the investigation will "hold the responsible individuals accountable".

Turkish supporters, however, claimed they were provoked by members of the Turkish Kurdish party YPG, which Erdogan's government considers a terrorist group for its links to the PKK.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said McGurk, who was initially an Obama appointee, was "definitely supporting the Kurds", insisting that US-Turkey relations would be improved by his removal from the position.

The State Department also said that acting Deputy Secretary of State Tom Shannon spoke with Turkish Ambassador Serdar Kilic about the fighting that left at least nine injured, including a DC police officer. The descent of Turkey into a strongman state is discouraging, and there's no sign that it's going to turn around any time soon.

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Cavusoglu was speaking in an interview with broadcaster NTV after returning from a visit with President Tayyip Erdogan to Washington where they met President Donald Trump.

"Violence is never an appropriate response to free speech, and we support the rights of people everywhere to free expression and peaceful protest", the statement read. The guards surrounded a middle-aged man who had been kicked to the ground and was kicked repeatedly in the face. They have no right to lay their hands on reporters or protesters or anyone else for that matter, when the people they are apparently roughing up seemed to be merely doing their jobs or exercising the rights they have in this country.

Turkey's embassy blamed the violence on demonstrators, saying they aggressively provoked Turkish-American citizens gathered to see Erdogan.

The State Department condemned the attack Wednesday, and police in the nation's capital said they were working to identify the assailants, some of whom were armed.

"That's not something that we tolerate here in Washington, D.C.", he said.

The US State Department expressed concern to Turkey in the "strongest possible terms" on Wednesday.

"The Turkish-Americans responded in self-defense", the statement said.

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