Turkey detains 17 people over protest against US Navy personnel.

Turkish authorities detained 17 people on Wednesday for putting a hood over the head of a visiting civilian US Navy employee at a protest against US policy in the Middle East, the Istanbul governor’s office said.

The group that carried out the event, the Turkish Youth Union (TGB), shared images on Twitter of the incident, in which a group of people chanted anti-American slogans to their target.

“You are our enemy and they do not want you here. We will not allow American soldiers to roam our lands freely. The Yankees are going home,” the group said, criticizing US support for Syrian Kurdish YPG fighters who Ankara considers terrorists.

The 17 people arrested had targeted a civilian employee of a US Navy ship that “came to our city as part of a port visit,” the governor’s office said in a statement. He did not elaborate on the possible charges against the group.

On Monday, the captain of the USS Mount Whitney said his crew was looking forward to visiting Turkey and “improving our relationship with our Turkish allies” as they sailed the Bosphorus to join NATO activities in the Black Sea.
Russian President Vladimir Putin complained this week about the ship’s presence in the region, and Russian Black Sea naval forces practiced destroying enemy targets.

An F / A-18E Super Hornet is launched from the flight deck of the US Navy’s Nimitz-class aircraft carrier ‘USS Abraham Lincoln’ in the Arabian Sea on May 16 (credit: REUTERS)

The TGB carried out a similar act in 2014 by putting a hood over the heads of US soldiers returning from an exercise in the Black Sea region.

Relations between the United States and Turkey, NATO allies, have been strained in recent years over differences over policy in Syria, Ankara’s purchase of Russian air defense systems and its human rights record.


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