News ID: 194876
Published: 1030 GMT June 16, 2017

Turkey summons US envoy over arrest warrants

Turkey summons US envoy over arrest warrants

Turkey’s Foreign Ministry “invited” the US ambassador in Ankara to condemn arrest warrants issued for a number of Turkish security agents accused of attacking protesters during President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Washington last month.

A ministry statement called the decision “wrong, biased and lacking legal basis.” The Turkish undersecretary has told US Ambassador John Bass that police in Washington did not take security precautions against the protesters, who Turkey says were associated with outlawed Kurdish militants, AP reported.

The ministry said, “Our citizens cannot be held responsible,” and argues the conflict would not have occurred if customary precautions for high-level meetings had been taken.

The ministry statement added, “It has been emphasized to the US ambassador that this decision, which is clearly the result of an investigation that was not objective and independent, is unacceptable.”

The Turkish president slammed the US decision to arrest a dozen of his security guards and two others accused of taking part in the violent attack on protesters during the visit to Washington, D.C.

Erdogan asked, “What kind of a law is this?”

Relations were severely strained even before the incident, which came as Erdogan arrived May 16 at the Turkish ambassador’s residence after a White House meeting with President Donald Trump. Police said video showed security guards and some Erdogan supporters attacking a small group of protesters. Nine people were hurt.

Referring to his security detail, Erdogan said, “If they are not going to protect me, why would I bring them with me to America?”

Erdogan said the protesters were members of an outlawed Kurdish militant group and the US police failed to act. He vowed to fight the decision on legal and political grounds.

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