Charges Dropped against 11 Members of Erdogan’s Security Team Accused of Beating Peaceful U.S. Protesters

ANCA's Aram Hamparian: "It's appeasement—abject, craven, appeasement of a foreign dictator at the expense of our American freedoms.”

WASHINGTON (A.W.)—Charges against 11 of the 15 members of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s security team accused of beating peaceful protesters in Washington, D.C. last May, have been dropped.

A screenshot from a video of the attack, captured by Voice of America’s Turkish service (Photo: Voice of America)

Nine people were taken to the hospital and two others were arrested after the violent attack on May 16, which targeted demonstrators gathered in front of the Turkish Ambassador’s residence, protesting Erdogan’s official visit to the U.S.

During a press conference last June, Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham announced that arrest warrants had been issued for the arrest of 12 members of the security detail for their attack.

A day earlier, on June 14, U.S. Marshals arrested two Turkish men—Eyup Yildirim—an owner of a construction company in New Jersey—and Sinan Narin—a Virginia resident—in connection with the attack. Two months later, a grand jury in the U.S. capital issued indictments against a total of 19 people—including the 15 security members.

“Erdogan sends his thugs to attack Americans on U.S. soil. It’s documented on CNN and news outlets across the U.S. Yet he’s allowed to bully and bribe away charges for these crimes, just as Turkey’s done for a century and more, starting with the Armenian Genocide,” said Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) Executive Director Aram Hamparian, in comments to the Armenian Weekly.  “It’s appeasement—abject, craven, appeasement of a foreign dictator at the expense of our American freedoms,” Hamparian added.

Hamparian, who was present at the May 16 protest, captured parts of the attack and streamed the aftermath live on the ANCA’s Facebook page. Months after the attack, Hamparian offered powerful testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe, calling for a clear and decisive U.S. response to the beatings. Hamparian’s live videotape footage from the attack was shown during the hearing.

Less than two weeks after the incident, the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee unanimously adopted H.Res.354 condemning the the attack, “calling for the perpetrators to be brought to justice and measures to be taken to prevent similar incidents in the future.” Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.) and Ranking Democrat Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) were joined by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) in spearheading the Congressional effort. The following month, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed H.Res.354 with a vote of 397 for and none against.

Last November, prosecutors appealed to a judge to drop the charges against four of Erdogan’s security members. Charges against seven others were dropped last month, when then-U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson traveled to Turkey to meet Erdogan and other Turkish government officials.

In comments to the Wall Street Journal, U.S. officials said that the prosecutors in the case were not pressured to drop the charges. According to them, investigators had misidentified some suspects and had insufficient evidence on some of the others involved.

The Armenian Weekly will be following the story and provide updates as they become available.



  1. It shows the true colours of the US.The neo con warmongers the swamp in Washington DC has won the battle for their spoiled child Turkey .

  2. And where did the “rule of law”, “incorruptible judiciary”, and crap like this go in the Theme Park known as America?

  3. Shame on the U.S. Government for dropping charges on those eleven members of Erdogan’s security team on their onslaught of the peaceful demonstration last year in May. What is this world coming to. Pictures were taken of the Turkish’s security team beating the peaceful demonstrators at the Turkish Embassy. It is a shame that Turkey has again bribed off the U.S. along with not recognizing the recognition of the Armenian Nation that numerous nations around the world have recognized.

  4. Did you really think these idiots were going to be prosecuted? come on! In all honesty did you really think it would happen? We are talking about erdogan and the americans – “you scratch my back and I will scratch yours”.

  5. If the shoe was on the other foot, do you think Turkish prosecutors would drop charges against American Christians?

  6. slightly off topic//
    It may interest you to know that Erdogan’s brazen interference in other countries extends to subversive and provocative actions carried out in Israel, since Obama twisted Netanyahu’s arm to make nice with Erdung. Many Turkish “tourists” have been coming here since “reconciliation”, creating provocations on the Temple Mount and other Jewish holy places, particularly those also claimed by Muslims, trying to push out Jewish worshippers.
    This also involves provocations against Armenians living in Israel. The Israeli weekly paper, Maqor Rishon, reports on 23 March 2018 (Yoman section, Pazit Ravina, p 14):
    “We have already reported here at length about Turkish tourists who wave signs ‘Jerusalem is Islamic’ on the Temple Mount and provoke residents of the Armenian Quarter [of the Old City of Jerusalem] and about the attempts of Hamas Turkey to recruit Arabs resident in Israel into Hamas.”
    You may be aware that a number of Hamas operatives are active in Turkey where they enjoy governmental protection.
    The actions of the Turkish thugs in Washington fits in perfectly with the provocations in Israel, which include interfering in Jewish prayer at Jewish holy places, such as the Tomb of Samuel the Prophet, who was never a Muslim prophet as far as I know.

    • That’s why Israel is a BFF with Turkey, Jack? And supplies arms to Caspian Turks in Azerbaijan to kill the Armenian Christians? That’s why Israel shamelessly refuses to acknowledge the Armenian genocide perpetrated by the Turks? That’s why Jewish lobbying groups block the recognition of the similar crime that has befallen the Armenians before the Holocaust?

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