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U.S. officials criticize Turkey after attack on DC protesters

19 May 2017

An attorney for Ayten Necmi, 49, one of the protesters who was arrested, told The Washington Post that he blamed D.C. police and the Secret Service for "being surprised" by the large turnout and overreacting. A man with a bullhorn is repeatedly kicked in the face.

Nine people were hurt and two people were arrested during the incident on Tuesday, and a D.C. Fire and EMS spokesperson reported two of those who were hurt sustained serious injuries and were taken to hospitals.

A violent confrontation Tuesday evening outside the Turkish ambassador's residence in Northwest Washington resulted in 11 people being injured.

According to the Anadolu news agency, Erdogan's guards were forced to intervene after United States police took "insufficient security measures" to prevent an illegal demonstration. A spokesman for the Turkish embassy could not be reached for immediate comment.

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

Second later, several men in suits run towards the protesters and confront them before clashes begin.

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"We are communicating our concern to the Turkish government in the strongest possible terms".

Politicians weighed in as well.

"We should throw the Turkish ambassador out of the country, we should identify those people that performed these unlawful acts of beating people up and they should be charged", McCain told reporters. "We do not do this here", Sen. "There is no excuse for this kind of thuggish behavior".

"The actions seen outside the Turkish Embassy in Washington DC stand in contrast to the First Amendment rights and principles we work tirelessly to protect every single day".

The Turkish Embassy said Wednesday night, though, that the demonstration was "unpermitted and provocative". "This is the United States of America".

There may be issues with diplomatic immunity, Police Chief Peter Newsham said at a news conference.

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But Trump stood out in his praise for Erdogan in April, surprising the global community when he called the Turkish president to congratulate him on a controversial referendum win that expanded his power.

"This is what happens in Turkey - this is not what happens in the USA", he told the paper.

Court paperwork spells his name Kheirabaoi, but he said that is incorrect.

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.

Trump and his national security team say the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF, is the most effective battlefield partner against the Islamic State in northern and eastern Syria.

Turkey considers the People's Protection Units, or YPG, a terror organization and an extension of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which has waged a three-decade-long insurgency against the country.

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"Groups affiliated with the PKK, which the US and Turkey have designated as a terrorist organization, gathered yesterday without permit in Sheridan Circle in the immediate vicinity of the Ambassador's Residence, while the President of Turkey was visiting the Residence". Such groups will "have no safe quarter", Trump said.