Authorities in Washington say that the brawl that broke out in front of the Turkish embassy in DC on Tuesday was instigated by Turkish government officials attacking Kurdish and anti-Erdoğan protesters.
US officials say that the men captured on camera assaulting the protesters were bodyguards of Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. The men allegedly had accompanied the controversial Turkish leader as part of his official retinue during his visit to the United States.
About two dozen demonstrators converged outside the Turkish embassy to protest the Erdoğan regime, specifically his government’s relationship with the Kurdish minority. The video depicted counter-demonstrators in dark suits descending on the protesters, some from the direction of the embassy.
”It was a pretty aggressive assault by people who were very well prepared. I think they were security or bodyguards or part of that contingent that traveled with President Erdogan,” said Aran Hamparian, the executive director of the Armenian National Committee of America, who took the now widely-circulated video.
During the fight, nine individuals were injured, one of which was a police officer. At least one of the wounded demonstrators suffered severe injuries.