McCain Calls For Expulsion of Turkish Envoy After Violence

Senator John McCain speaks to media. Photo: Reuters

As the American public still reels with the disturbing and shocking images of violence outside the Turkish Embassy during President Recep Tayyip Erdogan‘s entrance into the building, U.S. Senator John McCain said he would “throw the Turkish Ambassador out” of Washinton, D.C.

He offered a strong rebuke of the altercation between protesters and the embassy staff, even pressed for the removal of the Turkish ambassador to the U.S. in an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

“.. I’m still outraged that this Turkish beating these [protesters]… We should throw their ambassador hell out of the United States of America,” he said.

McCain who is a supporter of Turkey on many occasions, and who backs President Erdogan’s proposal for safe zones in Syria, this time unleashed a scathing criticism of the NATO ally.

“This is the United States of America. This isn’t Turkey. This isn’t Third World country,” McCain said, expressing his disdain. He said the incident should not be let it go without retaliation diplomatically. He even suggested bringing lawsuits against individuals identified for involvement in the violent intervention against peaceful protesters.

A day before, he strongly denounced the violence by President Erdogan’s bodyguards. “This is the United States of America. We do not do this here. There is no excuse for this kind of thuggish behavior,” he said on Twitter.

In addition to sharp condemnation, McCain, Republican of Arizona, along with Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, wrote a letter to the president of Turkey, calling for holding members of the security detail accountable for their violent attack against protesters.

The attack is, both senators reminded the Turkish president in the letter, “reflective of your government’s treatment of the press, ethnic minority groups and political opponents.”

President Erdogan held a meeting with his American counterpart Donald Trump on Tuesday at White House. The meeting was overshadowed by a cascade of stunning revelations over the Trump’s presidency.

When asked during his appearance on MSNBC about what White House or Senate could do given that the attacking “thugs” belong to President Erdogan’s security detail, Mr. McCain was unwavering in his conviction: I’d throw the ambassador out.

“These are not just average people did this beating. These are Erdogan’s security detail… Somebody told them to go out there and beat up these peaceful demonstrators.”

“I think there should have been repercussions, including identifying these people and bringing charges against them,” he added.


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