Turkish leader's bodyguards beat up protesters in Washington, DC

19 May, 2017, 04:06 | Author: Jonathon Greene
  • A still shot of footage of the violence that erupted outside the Turkish embassy last night

Authorities say nine people were hurt and two arrests were made during an altercation at the Turkish ambassador's residence in the US capital.

Witnesses told AFP that Turkish bodyguards pushed past a Washington police cordon outside the Turkish ambassador's residence and set about the protesters with their fists and feet. An estimated two dozen protesters congregated in front of Turkish ambassador Serdar Kılıç's residence, some waving a flag associated with the Syrian Kurdish People's Democratic Union (PYD), which Erdogan's government perceives as a direct threat to the integrity of Turkey. They've been accused of beating protesters in other countries as well.

Outside the Turkish Embassy in D.C. yesterday, there was a violent clash between protestors.

In a later statement Mr Erdogan hailed the "outstanding relations" between the nations - positive words considering much to Ankara's consternation the White House last week announced it had approved a fresh supply of weapons to the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) in Syria. The investors' meeting where Turkey's economic reforms, Turkish-U.S. trade, the possibility of technology investments and global funds to enhance investments were discussed follows on from two previously held in the U.S.in September and March 2016, Ermut explained.

It is unclear what started the fracas between the opposing groups, one of which carried Kurdish flags and anti-Erdogan posters, while the other brandished Turkish flags, with both shouting slogans. He says two people were arrested, including one who was charged with assaulting a police officer.

A state-owned Turkish news agency said that the president's security team was involved in the fighting outside the embassy, the New York Times reports.

"They think they can engage in the same sort of suppression of protest and free speech that they engage in in Turkey", Arthur said.

Trump assured that his government will support any efforts to reduce violence in Syria and promote a peaceful solution, and highlighted his offer to Turkey in its fight against the Islamic State (IS) and the illegal Workers' Party of Kurdistan (PKK).

Trump has been criticized for not publicly condemning the Turkish leader's human rights record and for congratulating him on winning a mid-April referendum that was widely seen as a way for Erdogan to consolidate power in a more authoritarian way.

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