Hundreds are expected to gather on Wednesday afternoon in Washington DC to protest Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to The White House.
The Order of AHEPA and Armenian National Committee have invited all members of the public to meet at 12 PM in Lafayette Square to voice opposition to US President Trump’s meeting with Erdogan, who has drawn international outrage for launching military strikes in Northeastern Syria — uprooting hundreds of thousands of civilians and killing dozens more.
AHEPA President George Horiates said the organization is calling on all chapters nationwide to help defy Erdogan.
“We call upon all AHEPAns to attend a peaceful demonstration to encourage the West to stop turning a blind eye toward Turkey,” Horiates said. “Defend Hellenism now. It is needed more than ever.”
The Chicago-based Hellenic American Leadership Council also released an official statement condemning the meeting.
“Turkey is not a friend of the US, and Turkey’s President Erdogan should never have been invited to the White House,” Public Affairs Director Thanos Davelis said. “His regime leads the world in jailing journalists; violates human rights at home and abroad; occupies the northern part of Cyprus; invades Greek airspace; tramples on religious freedom; helps Iran evade sanctions; purchases Russian missiles; attacks US partners and allies; engages in ethnic cleansing in northeast Syria; and continues to deny genocide.”
Turkey’s military invasions in Northeastern Syria came following Trump’s October 6 order to withdraw American troops, who had been supporting Kurdish allies mainly in the fight against ISIS.
Human rights organization Amnesty International has reported evidence of war crimes and other violations committed by Turkish and Turkey-backed Syrian forces.
“Turkish military forces and their allies have displayed an utterly callous disregard for civilian lives, launching unlawful deadly attacks in residential areas that have killed and injured civilians,” Amnesty International Secretary General Kumi Naidoo said.
Erdogan’s November 13 visit to Washington DC comes more than two years after the May 2017 incident in which his security guards attacked a crowd of peaceful protesters outside of the Turkish Embassy — leaving dozens injured.
Numerous members of Congress condemned the attacks, including late Sen. John McCain, who said the United States should throw the Turkish ambassador “the hell out of the United States.”
See video from May 2017 attacks
Click here for more information about the November 13 event.
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