It’s just possible that the rest of the world has learned at least one lesson about Turkey following the savage beatdown delivered to protesters in Washington recently by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s bodyguards. The Tyrant of Turkey is a bit of a thug himself and he obviously likes to hire people of a like mind to be in his entourage. The possible legal battles from that incident are still playing out, but leaders in Germany have clearly been paying attention and don’t want a similar incident taking place at the upcoming G20 meeting. The German Foreign Ministry put the word out this week, letting Erdogan know that his thuggish guards would not be welcome at the event. (Deutsche Welle)
The German Foreign Ministry warned Turkish bodyguards involved in violent scuffles in Washington last month not to attend the G20 summit in July, German media reported on Sunday.
Those warnings were then repeated to Bundestag members in closed-door meetings, respected national daily Die Welt reported.
The Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) said earlier that foreign powers did not hold sovereign powers, saying “foreign colleagues only have the right to self-defense,” the paper reported.
Hamburg Senator Andy Grote told Die Welt: “On our streets, only the Hamburg police have a say – and no one else. This includes foreign security forces.”
It seems that everyone attending the big event had to submit a list of all the personnel they were bringing along. The Germans took a look at Turkey’s submission and found the names of some of the same guards who were kicking in the ribs of protesters in Washington (before fleeing the country with diplomatic immunity) and informed them that they should stay home.
There’s plenty of reason to be cautious. That protest in Washington was small potatoes compared to what the G20 is expecting. They’re preparing for as many as 10,000 “left-wing radicals” to show up and try to disrupt the event. There’s also a large Kurdish presence in Hamburg and you can bet that they aren’t exactly thrilled with the way Erdogan has been trying to eradicate them from Turkey, with particular focus on declaring the PKK a terrorist organization.
If the Germans allow Erdogan’s thugs into the conference they could wind up with the same problems we had with them back in May. Germany offers diplomatic immunity in the same general way that we do. Just this year there was considerable outrage there when a Saudi driver killed a bicyclist and was then able to leave after claiming diplomatic protection. It’s just a pity that we didn’t have the same sort of advance warning before Erdogan’s visit.