Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Turkish foreign minister says wants USA envoy McGurk changed

Turkish foreign minister says wants USA envoy McGurk changed

They could see the protestors and their placards- and made a decision to "disperse them".

Parts of the clash were caught on video by VOA's Turkish Service.

Police say 11 people were injured, including one police officer and two Secret Service agents.

Mehmet Tankan, 31, said he was one of a dozen protesters outside the ambassador's residence chanting slogans when the brawl broke out.

Four or five Middle Eastern men in dark suits from the second group assaulted the peaceful protesters, and about eight people told officers they were attacked, thrown on the ground and stomped, the document said.

The State Department called the latest incident "deeply disturbing", insisting that a "thorough investigation that will allow us to hold the responsible individuals accountable is of the upmost importance to us".

The State Department condemned the attack Wednesday, and police in the nation's capital said they were working to identify the assailants, some of whom were armed.

Witnesses described what happened at the scene. "People have the right in our country to peacefully demonstrate and they were peacefully demonstrating". "Someone was beating me in the head nonstop", she said. "Someone was beating me in the head nonstop, and I thought, 'Okay, I'm on the ground already, what is the goal to beat me?"

The embassy blamed the violence on groups linked to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), saying they "aggressively provoked Turkish-American citizens" who had gathered to greet Erdogan.

On his return to Ankara, the foreign minister said Turkey had been assured that after the operation in Raqqa, territory seized from the jihadists would be handed back to the local Arab population. "We just celebrated our President".

The statement added that, "Turkey is a key NATO Ally that faces legitimate domestic security concerns emanating from ISIS, PKK, and other designated terrorist organizations".

USA officials expressed outrage after what they described as a "brutal attack" Tuesday by Erdogan bodyguards on a small group of pro-Kurdish protesters who gathered on the United States capital's "Embassy Row" after Erdogan met with President Donald Trump at the White House.

The US State Department expressed concern to Turkey in the "strongest possible terms" on Wednesday.

ISTANBUL (AP) - Turkey's leader told Donald Trump that his country will keep on fighting Syrian Kurdish militants even though they are a key US ally against the Islamic State group, Turkey's foreign minister said Thursday, adding that a top USA envoy should be fired for backing the Kurds.

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