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Germany Warns Turkish Bodyguards Not To Come To G20 (Video)

| by Selena Darlim
A photo of the interior of the G20 Summit in Toronto, Canada. A photo of the interior of the G20 Summit in Toronto, Canada.

The German Foreign Ministry warned bodyguards of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to stay away from the upcoming G20 Summit in Hamburg.  Erdogan's bodyguards are known for their history of violence with activists, who are expected to come out to the summit in droves (video below).  

Left-wing activists, several Kurdish-affiliated groups and possibly some right-wing Turkish extremist groups are expected to protest around the city during the G20 summit on July 7 and 8, Deutsche Welle reports.  It is said that 15,000 police officers from all over Germany have been drafted to handle the protests.

Temporary holding cells, legal consultation offices, courtrooms and medical examination rooms will be operating during the summit.  According to Deutsche Welle, an estimated 150,000 protesters are expected to arrive at the city's largest demonstration, titled, "G20 Not Welcome Here," on July 8. ,

Such political uproar at the presence of world leaders, including U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladmir Putin, has caused German summit hosts to take extra precautions to avoid violence.  

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"Some foreign security services of the Turkish delegation did not abide by the law and therefore those people are not welcome in Germany for the foreseeable future," said German Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schafer.

In May, Turkish security officials ignored U.S. police and attacked a group of Kurdish protesters following a meeting between Turkish and U.S. presidents in Washington, D.C.  A video of the attack soon went viral on social media.

According to Deutsche Welle, nine bodyguards and three police officers belonging to Erdogan's security detail were issued arrest warrants for the incident.  In response, Turkey's Foreign Ministry criticized the "aggressive" actions of the U.S.

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In another incident, Erdogan's bodyguards attacked a group of reporters outside of the Brookings Institution.  Some reporters were physically assaulted in the attack.

On June 25, the Hamburger Abendblatt reported that the Turkish Embassy sent the German Foreign Ministry a list of 50 people who were supposed to accompany Erdogan to the G20 Summit. The list reportedly included some of the bodyguards who were involved in the D.C. attack.

Die Welt reported that Germany's Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) said that foreign powers did not hold sovereign powers, claiming that they only had the right to self-defense.

"On our streets, only the Hamburg police have a say -- and no one else," said Hamburg Senator Andy Grote to Die Welt. "This includes foreign security forces."

Schafer did not confirm or deny reports regarding the Foreign Ministry's actions, but issued a statement:

"The Turkish side just like all other guests who travel to Germany must abide by German law," he said. "This is what our Turkish partners also know."

CNN reports that the neither the Turkish Foreign Ministry or Erdogan's office have given them a comment.  This is possibly because June 26 and 27 are Turkish holidays.

Sources: Deutsche Welle (2), CNN  / Photo credit: Pete Souza via Wikimedia Commons, Jenny Witt/Deutsche Welle, Voice of America via Deutsche Welle

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