US detained, released 2 Turkish security officers involved in massive fight

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19 May, 2017

Sen. John McCain said Thursday that Turkey's ambassador to the United States should be removed after a clash between Turkish security and protesters in Washington D.C. this week.

Germany's Foreign Ministry says a diplomat has been able to meet with a German-Turkish journalist imprisoned in the Istanbul area but there's still no information about a second German journalist in custody in Turkey.

On Thursday, Voice of America's Turkish Service released video showing Erdogan observing from the back seat of a vehicle while his security team pursued and attacked the protesters. It made no mention of Turkish security personnel, and blamed the unrest on demonstrators supporting the PKK, a group "which the U.S. and Turkey have designated as a terrorist organization". "It would be beneficial if this person is changed", Cavusoglu said. The department says the ambassador met Wednesday with Tom Shannon, the acting deputy secretary of state and highest-ranking career US diplomat. "We call upon the Turkish government to apologize immediately for the involvement of any officials", said the statement.

A congressional aide told The Associated Press that two members of Erdogan's security detail were detained on the scene Tuesday by diplomatic security agents, and they quickly claimed diplomatic immunity and were released.

A State Department spokeswoman, Heather Nauert, said in a statement Thursday that McGurk had the "full support and backing" of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and the White House. Turkey and the United States have branded the PKK a terrorist group, but the United States thinks differently about the YPG and fights with them against ISIS. He added that "this kind of thing can not go unresponded diplomatically".

There are several reasons that's probably not going to happen, but the most persuasive is video that shows Erdogan pulling up outside the Turkish embassy in a Mercedes Benz sedan, moments before the brawl occurred.

Erdogan visited U.S. President Donald Trump in the White House on Tuesday.

An embassy statement said the group had "aggressively provoked Turkish-American citizens" who had gathered to greet Erdogan.

"President Trump's embrace of Erdogan is another in the line of similarly warm embrace of autocrats around the globe", Schiff wrote on Facebook. Over 33,000 tweets mentioned the hashtag, many of which said the protesters deserved to be beaten, and that Turkish users were "very satisfied watching the video".

Washington's Metropolitan Police Department said it had arrested two United States residents, Ayten Necmi, 49, and Jalal Kheirabadi, 42, over the incident.

"We are facing a picture where terrorist organisations are constantly supported, strengthened and are confronting us". USA officials said this month that the White House had approved supplying arms to the YPG, a decision that caused alarm in Ankara.


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