WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 (UPI) — A group of angry protesters greeted Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan at a function in Washington Thursday.
At least 50 protestors shouted, “AEI shame on you, Saddam is proud of you,” and “Richard Perle shame on you, Osama bin-Laden is proud of you,” in front of the American Enterprise Institute, where the prime minister was scheduled to address a gathering.
Members of the Kurdish, Greek, and Cypriot communities saw AEI’s hosting of Erdogan as an opportunity to voice their dissent with what they viewed as Turkey’s “denial of the Armenian genocide, abuse of human rights, aggression against the Kurds, blockade of U.S. aid to Armenia, restrictions against Christians, and military occupation of Cyprus.”
Richard Perle, advisor to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, introduced Erdogan at the event.
Abraham Niziblian, government affairs director at the Armenian National Committee of the Americas said, “The Prime Minister of Turkey is here meeting the United States on an official visit. The American Enterprise Institute is hosting a reception for him and giving him the red carpet treatment.”
ANCA’s Elizabeth Chouldjian said, “Turkey continues to violate human rights within its own borders …Turkey continues to blockade Armenia.”