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Archive for Turkey

Newsline: Two Turkish-Americans Plead Not Guilty in Embassy Brawl

Two Turkish-American men involved in a brawl at the Turkish Embassy earlier this year pleaded not guilty to assault charges in a Washington, D.C., courtroom Thursday. Sinan Narin of Virginia and Eyup Yildirim of New Jersey faced charges of felony aggravated assault as well as making assault threats. Court documents from Thursday indicate the men both entered pleas of not guilty and asked for a jury trial. Eighteen people, many of whom were members of the Turkish ambassador’s security detail, were indicted for allegedly attacking protesters outside the ambassador’s residence on May 16. All 18 were charged with conspiracy to commit a crime of violence, a felony punishable by a maximum of 15 years in prison. Several faced additional charges of assault with a deadly weapon. D.C. police have arrested four suspects with U.S. addresses, including including Narin and Yildirim; but warrants are still out for 14 Turkish security officers. Another suspect — Ayten Necmi of New York — is due in court September 22, while the case of the fourth detainee, Jalal Kheirabaoi of Virginia, has been dismissed. The brawl took place outside the residence of Turkey’s ambassador to Washington shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the White House.

https://www.voanews.com/a/turkish-americans-appear-court-over-embassy-brawl/4019532.html

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Newsline: More arrests in U.S. after attack on protesters at Turkish embassy

A total of 19 people, including 15 identified as Turkish security officials, were indicted by a grand jury in the U.S. capital for attacking protesters in May 2017 during a U.S. visit by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The indictments charge the defendants with attacking peaceful demonstrators who had gathered on May 16 outside the home of the Turkish ambassador, awaiting Erdogan’s arrival after he had met with President Trump at the White House. All 19 defendants are charged with conspiracy to commit a crime of violence, a felony punishable by a statutory maximum of 15 years in prison. Several face additional charges of assault with a deadly weapon. Sixteen of the defendants had already been charged on June 13; Tuesday’s indictment adds three new defendants, all Turkish security officials. Two of the defendants were arrested in June and face an initial court hearing on Sept. 7. The rest remain at large. Several are members of Erdogan’s security detail who returned with him to Turkey, so it is unclear if any will face legal repercussions in the United States. However, they could end up being threatened with arrest if they return to the U.S. If any are still in the country, they could be expelled if Turkey refuses to waive diplomatic immunity.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/more-arrests-in-attack-on-protests-at-turkish-embassy/

Newsline: Germany summons Turkey’s ambassador over activists’ arrests

Germany’s Foreign Ministry has summoned Turkey’s ambassador to Berlin over the arrests of human rights activists, including German citizen Peter Steudtner. The Foreign Ministry issued a sharply worded statement. The German Foreign Ministry said it had summoned Turkey’s ambassador in Berlin to protest the pre-trial detention of six human rights activists, particularly that of German citizen Peter Steudtner. “The Turkish government needs to immediately and directly hear the German government’s outrage and incomprehension as well as its crystal-clear expectations in the case of Peter Steudtner and, this time, without diplomatic niceties,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schäfer said. Schäfer said German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel had interrupted his summer vacation to attend government consultations over the Turkish court’s decision to jail Steudtner, a human rights trainer who was taken into custody earlier this month.

http://www.dw.com/en/germany-summons-turkish-ambassador-over-activists-arrests/a-39750214

Newsline: US lawmaker wants to block F-35 sales to Turkey over embassy brawl

A Democratic lawmaker from Rhode Island is seeking to block the U.S. sale of Lockheed Martin-made F-35 fighter jets to Turkey over an attack on protesters outside the Turkish ambassador’s residence in Washington two months ago. Rep. David Cicilline, a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, has proposed the ban as an amendment to the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, which was passed by the House Armed Services Committee last month. The House is expected to take up the bill and deal with amendments next week. Any approved amendments would then need House approval to join the bill, which would have to be reconciled with the Senate version after it passes the House.

http://www.defensenews.com/articles/us-lawmaker-wants-to-block-f-35-sales-to-turkey-over-embassy-brawl

Newsline: Turkish president condemns US decision to charge bodyguards after embassy brawl

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan furiously condemned the United States for charging two of Erdogan’s bodyguards for the bloody May brawl outside the Turkish Embassy in Washington, D.C. In a statement, Turkey’s ministry of foreign affairs said the arrests of Erdogan’s bodyguards are “wrong, biased and lacks legal basis” following the melee that sent nine protesters to the hospital. “That the brawl in front of the Turkish Ambassador’s Residence was caused by the failure of local security authorities to take necessary measures; that this incident would not have occurred if the US authorities had taken the usual measures they take in similar high level visits and therefore that Turkish citizens cannot be held responsible for the incident that took place,” the ministry’s statement reads, according to reports. In televised remarks Thursday night, Erdogan furiously attacked his NATO ally for the arrests. He explained that his bodyguards’ presence at the brawl was merely to protect him, despite video that shows him watching from a nearby car while his guards are fighting. “Why would I take my guards to the United States if not to protect myself?” Erdogan asked. D.C. Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham said that the violence at the embassy was unprecedented, and that the Turkish Embassy’s “self-defense” explanation wouldn’t fly.

http://thehill.com/homenews/news/338093-erdogan-condemns-us-decision-to-charge-bodyguards-over-embassy-protester

Newsline: Turkish guards charged in embassy protests in Washington

D.C. authorities announce criminal charges Thursday against 12 members of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s security detail and the police force who authorities say attacked protesters outside the ambassador’s residence last month, according to two officials familiar with the case. Police officials say arrest warrants have been issued and that the suspects, all believed to be in Turkey, are now wanted in the United States. The charges come nearly a month after the clashes at Sheridan Circle along Massachusetts Avenue’s Embassy Row. Police and other officials say various members of Erdogan’s visiting security team, some of them armed, attacked a group protesting his regime as police struggled to restore order. People injured in the May 16 attack and U.S. lawmakers have criticized the initial response, which was complicated by issues of diplomatic immunity and relations with Turkey, which is sure to be angry over the warrants. Officials at the Turkish Embassy in Washington could not be reached. Some critics were angry that police did not make more arrests on the spot. The U.S. State Department ordered a federal police agency to release two presidential guards taken into custody, saying they had diplomatic immunity.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/turkish-guards-will-be-charged-in-embassy-protests-officials-say/2017/06/14/fecee1ea-46d1-11e7-bcde-624ad94170ab_story.html

Newsline: Turkish Police Identify 5 Suspects Connected to Russian Ambassador Killing

The Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office has identified five suspects in connection with the murder of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov and is pursuing the possibility that one of the five might have ordered the assassin police officer to kill the envoy. Details continue to emerge regarding the assassination of Karlov, who was killed late on Dec. 19, 2016, as the prosecutor’s office has been conducting an extensive investigation to determine who was behind the murder. Prosecutors have determined five suspects who might have been in contact with the assassin.

http://plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=14098&SEO=turkish-police-identify-5-suspects-connected-to-ambassador-killing