Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is not a popular figure in his country of Turkey. He carries out a repeated pattern of human rights abuses against his citizens, detaining journalists and others who dare to speak out against him.
Recently, the Turkish government passed a referendum that grants Erdogan broad new powers, putting him even closer into the role of a dictator than ever before. Oddly enough, President Trump called Erdogan on the occasion of that bill’s passage to congratulate him, even though granting Erdogan powers beyond the ones he already has is hardly something that could be said to be congratulations worthy.
Trump just likes dictators, apparently.
Erdogan visited President Trump in Washington, D.C., this past Tuesday, and carrying on with a long history of such behavior on his entourage’s part, the Turkish President’s personal bodyguards started a bloody brawl with protesters who had assembled in Washington, D.C., on the occasion of Erdogan’s visit.
Erdogan has carried out human rights abuses against Kurds living in his country, prompting some of them to turn to armed conflict against the Turkish government. Erdogan has been all too ready to engage with these Kurds in armed conflict, calling them “terrorists” and pledging to root them out with no regard to hearing the issues that the Kurdish people have.
Erdogan’s entourage has claimed that the protesters who they attacked in D.C. this past week were affiliated with the violent Kurdish factions that often wreak havoc back in Turkey — but they weren’t. There is no indication that Erdogan’s entourage’s assertion is correct.
In the brawl, which representatives for Erdogan’s bodyguards claim was born out of self defense, some nine people were documented to have been injured.
Making the whole thing even worse is new video that has emerged which shows that President Erdogan was literally watching his bodyguards beat people up.
In the video, which you can see below, Erdogan steps out of car a little ways away from where his bodyguards are beating people up before retreating into the residence of the Turkish Ambassador to the United States.
Interests ranging from U.S. Senator John McCain to the State Department itself have expressed outrage at the incident. McCain has called for the Turkish Ambassador to the United States to be expelled from the country.
Will President Trump express similar outrage at what took place? Only time will tell, but it’s not likely.
Featured Image via Elif Sogut/ Getty Images