Turkey’s foreign ministry on Monday lodged a formal protest with the U.S. ambassador to Ankara over what it said were “lapses of security” during President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Washington earlier this month.
The summoning of the ambassador, John Bass, marked a sharp escalation in a diplomatic rift between Turkey and the United States over a violent confrontation between protesters and Turkish security guards in Washington that has prompted outrage in the United States and calls for the guards to be prosecuted.
American and Turkish officials have provided directly contrasting versions of how the violence unfolded. Local police officials said the Turkish guards savagely attacked a peaceful protest outside the Turkish ambassador’s residence as Erdogan was visiting, in a bout of violence that was captured in detail on video. Turkish diplomats, though, criticized the local police for failing to quell an “unpermitted” and “provocative” demonstration.
The Turkish foreign ministry’s statement on Monday went even further, criticizing “the inability of U.S. authorities to take sufficient precautions at every stage of the official program.” And it demanded that the United States conduct a “full investigation of this diplomatic incident and provide the necessary explanation.”
This piece was originally published at the Washington Post.