Turkey’s foreign minister showed solidarity with two Turkish-American men awaiting trial for brutally kicking a female protester outside of the Turkish ambassador’s residence in Washington, D.C., visiting the duo in a Washington, D.C. jail earlier this week.
Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu visited the two men, Eyup Yildirim and Sinan Narin, during his trip to the U.S. to attend the United Nations General Assembly.
“Sinan Narin and Eyüp Yildirim, who continue to be tried in Washington, visited our brothers and expressed their love and greetings,” reads a rough translation of Çavuşoğlu’s tweet.
According to CNN Turk, Yildirim and Narin have been visited frequently by Turkish consular officials.
Yildirim and Narin are two of 19 people who have been indicted for their role in the May 16 attacks, which left at least nine peaceful protesters injured.
Two Turkish-Canadian men have also been charged, as have 15 security personnel who were protecting Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Erdogan and other Turkish government officials have criticized the U.S. government for charging the men. Erdogan has defended his bodyguards and the private citizens who took part in the assault. He claims that W
ashington, D.C. police and U.S. Secret Service failed to protect him from the protesters, who he has claimed are terrorist sympathizers and posed a direct threat to his safety.
A group of between 10 and 20 Kurdish protesters carrying signs and flags were seen peacefully protesting Erdogan across the street from the ambassador’s residence.
One video suggests that Erdogan passed verbal instructions to his direct bodyguard to attack the protesters. Dozens of Erdogan’s supporters and bodyguards were positioned between the protesters and Erdogan, who was seen on video calmly watching the melee from near the entrance of the ambassador’s residence.
Yildirim, who has a cleanly shaved head, was one of the more visible participants in the melee.
He was seen yelling at the protesters prior to the attacks. During the attacks, he was seen on video rushing towards a female protester who had been pushed to the ground during the blitz. Yildirim, 50, then kicked the woman, Lucy Usoyan, multiple times while she laid curled up on the ground.
Yildirim, who owns a construction company in New Jersey, then turned to Seyid Reza Dersimi and proceeded to kick him while he also laid on the ground.
Usoyan confirmed to The Daily Caller that Yildirim was her attacker. She said in an interview that she suffered a mild brain injury and required six weeks to recover.
When first reached by phone by TheDC, Yildirim denied taking part in the attacks.
Narin, a 45-year-old resident of Virginia, acknowledged to The New York Times that he kicked Usoyan as well, but he said that he was unaware that she was a woman.
Yildirim and Narin were arrested on June 14 by U.S. Marshals. The next day, Washington, D.C. Metro police announced charges against Yildirim and Narin, along with 14 others involved in the attacks.
Last month, a grand jury issued indictments in the case. Along with the 16 who were initially charged, three additional Erdogan bodyguards were indicted. (RELATED: Erdogan Bodyguards Indicted For May 16 Attacks)
Yildirim and Narin pled not guilty in D.C. Superior Court on Sept. 7. Their next hearing is scheduled for Oct. 10.