Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainRedistricting reform key to achieving the bipartisanship Americans claim to want Kelly takes under-the-radar approach in Arizona Senate race Voting rights, Trump's Big Lie, and Republicans' problem with minorities MORE (R-Ariz.) and Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinLawmakers in both parties to launch new push on Violence Against Women Act Domestic travel vaccine mandate back in spotlight Biden, lawmakers mourn Harry Reid MORE (D-Calif.) are demanding the Turkish government take responsibility for a brawl involving protesters in Washington, D.C., this week.
“The actions of your staff violate the constitutional protections of freedom of the press and freedom of assembly enjoyed by all Americans,” they wrote in a letter to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday.
“Your staff’s blatant violation of these rights on American soil is an affront to those freedoms, and reflects poorly on your government,” the pair added.
“We cannot turn a blind eye to these actions at home, and we urge you to hold accountable those members of your staff who violently attacked peaceful protestors in our nation’s capital.”
McCain earlier in the day slammed Turkey's government over the violent clash, which transpired Tuesday outside the ambassador's residence on Washington's Embassy Row.
“I’d throw the Turkish ambassador out,” the GOP senator said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
The Turkish Embassy in Washington claimed Wednesday that Erdogan’s bodyguards were acting in “self-defense."
Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham called Tuesday’s attacks on protesters at the Turkish ambassador’s residence “brutal.”
“That’s something we will not tolerate here in Washington, D.C.,” Newsham said. “This is a city where people should be allowed to come and peacefully protest.”
Newsham said that Tuesday’s scuffle wounded 11 people and one police officer, with nine receiving treatment at local hospitals.
He added that authorities had arrested a New York man and charged him with aggravated assault, while a Fairfax, Va., man was arrested and charged with assault on a police officer.
About two dozen demonstrators were present before Tuesday’s skirmish, which occurred as President Trump hosted Erdogan at the White House.