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Turkey demands USA fire envoy in spat over Syrian Kurds

19 Mai 2017

In addition, "the U.S. Department of State is working closely with local authorities concerning this incident". It took place just hours after Erdogan met with President Donald Trump at the White House.

The unseemly incident is adding to U.S.

Tensions between Washington and Istanbul are running high after the Trump administration announced plans to arm Kurdish Syrian militants fighting the Islamic State group despite intense opposition from Turkey, which considers the Kurds as terrorists.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu insisted at the time that Turkey was not seeking to become an adversary to the European Union, but complained about the approach.

Anti-Turkey demonstrations are becoming more common in cities around the world, posing additional security threats.

Washington and Ankara are bitterly at odds over United States support for the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) in Syria, which Turkey considers a front for banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) separatists. US officials said this month that the White House had approved supplying arms to the YPG, a decision that caused alarm in Ankara.

Nine people were hurt and two arrests were made during the altercation, which occurred during the controversial Turkish leader's meeting with Donald Trump on Wednesday.

Seconds later, other members of the presidential security detail run towards the protesters to confront them.

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"Violence is never an appropriate response to free speech, and we support the rights of people everywhere to free expression and peaceful protest", State Department spokesman Heather Nauert said.

Turkey called on Thursday for the removal of the USA diplomat coordinating the worldwide coalition fighting the Daesh terror group, accusing him of backing Syrian Kurdish militias. "It would be beneficial for this person to change", he said, accusing the diplomat of pursuing policies of the Obama administration, according to broadcaster NTV.

While Brunson admits to welcoming Kurds at his Christian house of worship, the İzmir Resurrection Church, and sharing the stage with them while leading services, he has denied enabling the spread of any anti-Turkish government messages and noted that, as he did not speak Kurdish himself, he could not know what anyone said in his church in Kurdish.

"We clearly told them this: if there is any sort of attack from the YPG and PYD against Turkey, we will implement the rules of engagement without asking anyone", the Sabah newspaper citing him as saying.

This is the United States of America.

"We have long supported Turkey as a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, and a key United States ally in the region, and we expect conduct more appropriate to our decades-long partnership".

Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham said in a news conference on Wednesday that police had a good idea of most of the assailants' identities and were investigating with the Secret Service and State Department.

"I saw that America is very sensitive about [the] Raqqa operation", Erdogan said.

Turkey demands USA fire envoy in spat over Syrian Kurds