McCain: Turkish ambassador should get 'the hell out'

Claudine Rigal
Mai 21, 2017

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan watched Tuesday as men believed to be members of his security detail attacked protesters in the nation's capital, US News reports.

In the video, Erdogan is seen standing beside a black Mercedes sedan while his bodyguards in suit were beating up some of the protesters.

Ambassador Serdar Kılıç met with Under Secretary of State Tom Shannon on Wednesday, officials tell the BBC. The Police arrested two persons.

The Turkish foreign minister is calling for the removal of the United States envoy, claiming he is sympathetic to Kurdish Syrians as the top congressional Republican demands swift action after the Turkish president's security detail violently broke up a protest in Washington, DC. Senator John McCain, R-AZ, and Senator Claire McCaskill, D-MO, both called for the expulsion of Turkey's ambassador.

State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said the agency is "concerned by the violent incidents" and "violence is never an appropriate response to free speech".

The Turkish embassy claimed the president's bodyguards were acting in "self-defense".

"Your staff's blatant violation of these rights on American soil is an affront to those freedoms, and reflects poorly on your government", they wrote.

In a statement Wednesday, Washington police said the incident outside the Turkish embassy stood "in contrast to the First Amendment rights and principles we work tirelessly to protect each and every day".

"The violence and injuries were the result of this unpermitted, provocative demonstration", an embassy statement said. Turkish security is visible from Erdogan's vehicle brawling with protesters.

The melee followed an otherwise uneventful Oval Office meeting between President Trump and Erdogan at which the two agreed to fight terrorism, Erdogan's definition of "terrorists" sadly including just about anyone who disagrees with him. "We are already telling you in advance, our rules of engagement give us this authority, we will take such a step and we won't discuss it or consult with anyone".

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

"We are going to pursue everything that's within our legal power to hold the folks that were responsible accountable for their actions", D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said at a press conference.

The militia associated with the PYD, the People's Protection Units (YPG), are allies of the United States, while the Turkish government considers them a terrorist organization.

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