WASHINGTON — Audio and video analysis of recorded footage of the May 16 attack on peaceful demonstrators in Washington, has found that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan may have ordered members of his security detail to carry out the violence.
Several groups and public figures have condemned the May 16 attack. On May 18, Senator John McCain (R-AZ)called for the removal of the Turkish Ambassador to the United States.
“We should throw [Turkey's] Ambassador the hell out of the United States of America. This isn’t Turkey or a third world country,” McCain said, speaking on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program. “This kind of thing cannot go unresponded diplomatically,” he added.
The attack was also condemned by Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, who along with D.C Police Chief Peter Newham, has launched an investigation into the unprovoked beatings.
“What we saw yesterday— a violent attack on a peaceful demonstration—is an affront to D.C values and our rights as Americans,” said Mayor Bowser in a statement. “I strongly condemn these actions and have been briefed by Chief Newsham on our response. The Metropolitan Police Department will continue investigating the incident and will work with federal partners to ensure justice is served.”
On May 17, a day after the attack, the State Department announced it was “concerned by the violent incidents involving protesters and Turkish Security personnel on Tuesday evening,” stating that “violence is never an appropriate response to free speech.”