Top senator calls for removal of Turkey's US ambassador


Another person wrenches a woman's neck and throws her to the ground.

Eleven people, including a U.S. officer were hurt in the brawl. As seen in the footage, Erdogan watched how the protesting crowd was being heavily battered.

Turkey's official Anadolu news agency labeled the protesters Kurdish "supporters of terror". Police said they were checking reports that some of the attackers worked as bodyguards for the Turkish president.

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.

"The Turkish-Americans responded in self-defense", the statement said. "Luckily there was a man in the auto who helped me get into the other side of the vehicle".

Over 80 Members of Congress have expressed their concerns about the "continuing erosion of human rights and the dramatic decline of democratic values in Turkey" in a letter sent to President Trump prior to his meeting with President Erdogan.

"We strongly condemn the violence that took place yesterday (Tuesday, May 16 - Ed.) outside the Turkish Embassy in Washington", the senators said in a statement Wednesday.

Politicians weighed in as well.

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The security detail, he continued, violated American laws on United States ground, and that can not happen. "We do not do this here", Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "There is no excuse for this kind of thuggish behavior", he tweeted.

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.

Washington's Metropolitan Police Department said it had arrested two U.S. residents, Ayten Necmi, 49, and Jalal Kheirabadi, 42, over the incident, according to the BBC. Some of the guards are believed to have diplomatic immunity or left the USA with Erdogan, The Wall Street Journal reports, though the State Department - which expressed its "concern" to Turkey "in the strongest possible terms" - is exploring ways to block Erdogan's security detail from returning to the US; some of the same guards harassed a Turkish reporter in Washington past year, too.

Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham called Tuesday's attacks on protesters at the Turkish ambassador's residence "brutal". He said police were examining video to identify those responsible.

He added that authorities had arrested a NY man and charged him with aggravated assault, while a Fairfax, Va., man was arrested and charged with assault on a police officer.

Jalal Kheirabadi, 42, of Fairfax, Virginia, charged with assaulting a police officer, refused treatment for cuts to his face.

Erdogan's visit to Washington March 2016 was also marred by fights between his supporters and protesters, and members of his security detail were caught on video trying to eject journalists critical of his administration prior to a planned speech at the Brookings Institution. "We are not going to beg", he said.