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US officials criticize Turkey after attack on DC protesters

20 May 2017, 12:57 | Marion Schneider

Brett McGurk is "definitely giving support" to Turkey's outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) in Syria, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on May 18.

The biggest dispute between Turkey and the US recently has been the Trump administration's plans to arm Kurdish Syrian militants fighting the Islamic State group.

Ankara considers the YPG to be a terrorist group linked to the outlawed PKK, which has been fighting a decades-long insurgency in Turkey. "It would be beneficial for this person to change", Cavusoglu said, referring to McGurk, adding that Turkey "would not meddle in the domestic issues of another country".

On Tuesday, Trump held talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Washington amid heightened tensions over Trump's recent decision to arm Syrian Kurds fighting against Daesh.

Initial reports described the fight, which left several people visibly bloodied, as a "clash" between supporters of Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Erdogan's security detail, and people protesting Erdogan's meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump earlier in the day.

It's not clear to what extent President Erdogan's full security team was involved.

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".

On Thursday, in response to the clashes, Sen.

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"We should throw their ambassador the hell out of the United States of America", McCain said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe".

McCain said "this kind of thing can not go unresponded to diplomatically".

The remarks from Graham and McCain come after Rep. Ed Royce of California, the Republican chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, called on the Trump administration to investigate whether criminal charges are warranted against any of the bodyguards.

"We see that the current administration is very different and more honest than the previous administration", Cavusoglu said. "The American police let them attack us".

Turkey has called for the removal of the United States official coordinating the worldwide coalition purportedly fighting Daesh Takfiri terrorists in Iraq and Syria amid growing tensions between Ankara and other members of the Washington-led alliance. "They are the people from the Obama administration".

German media have reported that over 400 Turkish military personnel, diplomats, judges and other officials and their relatives had sought political asylum in Germany.

"They welcomed it with understanding", he said.



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