Noisy US welcome as Erdogan defends hardline stance

Journalists and supporters of Kurdish militants scuffled and traded insults with Turkish guards protecting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Washington ahead of his meeting with US leader Barack Obama, reports AFP.
A small group of protesters gathered Thursday outside the Washington think tank where the Turkish president was to speak, brandishing the banners of the YPG, a Kurdish militant group based in Syria. Ankara regards the YPG as an affiliate of the PKK, Turkey’s main Kurdish separatist movement, and has declared it a terrorist threat.
However, Washington sees the YPG guerrillas as key allies in its campaign against the Islamic State group. Just ahead of Erdogan’s arrival at the Brookings Institute in Washington, Turkish security officials clashed with the crowd—both sides exchanging insults and scuffling—before local police were able to separate them.
The Turkish guards also set about the press. One aimed a chest-high kick at an American reporter attempting to film the harassment of a Turkish opposition reporter, and another called a female foreign policy scholar a “PKK whore.”

source : the daily star

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