Lt. Col. Hakan Karakuş of the Turkish Air Force faces six years in prison for damaging public property after he kicked the car of a Kuwaiti diplomat in the capital Ankara last year, according to Habertürk newspaper.
Karakuş was injured in a quarrel with Kuwaiti embassy staff including a Turkish driver when his car was overtaken by a car occupied by an attache from the Kuwaiti embassy.
A court in Ankara accepted the indictment on the case. Selahattin Aydın, the driver of the attache, Emad Ali Almohid, faces up to four years for assault. Aydın was accused of punching the officer, who was traveling with his family at the time of the incident.
Both the Kuwaiti embassy and Karakuş had filed complaints against each other in the case. Almohid and an unidentified diplomat were also indicted but since they have diplomatic immunity, the court referred their indictment to the Justice Ministry.
The indictment says the Turkish driver and the Kuwaiti diplomats punched and pushed Karakuş.
Officials from the Kuwaiti Embassy in Ankara were summoned to the Foreign Ministry after the incident. If the ministry greenlights legal proceedings and if they are found guilty, Almohid and the unidentified diplomat may face deportation.
The Turkish Armed Forces has issued a statement that condemned the "heinous" attack on Karakuş. The statement included a thank you to locals for intervening in the brawl. Karakuş, a veteran officer in the Air Force, is also son-in-law of Gen. Akın Öztürk, commander of the Turkish Air Forces. Kuwaiti Ambassador Abdullah Abdulaziz al-Duwaik had claimed earlier his staff did not "beat up" Karakuş. He said the pilot got out of his car and insulted embassy officials, while the officials remained "silent."
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