US officials criticize Turkey after attack on DC protesters

It's not clear to what extent President Erdogan's full security team was involved. "Violence is never an appropriate response to free speech, and we support the rights of people everywhere to free expression and peaceful protest", said the statement, clearly stating that the demonstration in front of Kılıç's residence was legal, peaceful and protected.

A video posted online showed men in dark suits chasing protesters and punching and kicking them as baton-wielding police tried to intervene.

"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.

Nine people were injured in the violence, some of whom were kicked and stamped while on the ground.

"Yesterday afternoon we witnessed what appeared to be a brutal attack on peaceful protesters outside the Turkish ambassador's residence", a police spokesman said. "The Turkish-Americans responded in self-defense and one of them was seriously injured".

"We are concerned by the violent incidents involving protestors and Turkish security personnel Tuesday evening". The statement said that the US communicated its concerns to the Turkish government "in the strongest possible terms".

Speaking in Istanbul two days after meeting President Donald Trump in Washington, Erdogan criticised the USA decision to ally with "terror organisations" for the long-awaited operation to capture Raqqa, the de facto capital of IS.

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According to D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham, the situation was especially "dicey" because some of the Turkish guards were armed. Video shows people pushing past police to confront a small group of protesters across the street in Sheridan Circle.

"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".

"I ask that you immediately look into this matter and bring all appropriate charges before these individuals leave the United States".

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

Cavusoglu said Turkey received US assurances that arms sent to the YPG would only be used against IS and not against Turkey, with a promise to support Turkey's fight against the PKK.

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

Turkey's foreign minister says the country will continue to fight Syrian Kurdish militants, and he has relayed this position to the United States, which considers them a key ally against the Islamic State group.

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