US Ambassador Joseph LeBaron in fight with Turkish ambassador over Hillary Clinton's schedule in Qatar
The U.S. envoy to Qatar got into a smackdown last week with his counterpart from Turkey in a dispute over Hillary Clinton's busy schedule in Doha during the U.S.-Islamic World Forum.
It all went down when Ambassador Joseph LeBaron -- a career diplomat posted to Qatar since 2008 -- tried to get the secretary of state out of a meeting with Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan that was going into overtime, making her late for a sit-down with Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani. Eyewitnesses told our colleagues at Foreign Policy magazine that LeBaron got into a yelling match -- and possibly a physical struggle -- with Turkish Ambassador Fuat Tanlay as he banged on the meeting-room door. Turkish media accounts even had the men "grab[bing] each other by the neck." But LeBaron, in a statement to FP, denied any "violence or physical contact." He added, "What was important was that Secretary of State Clinton was able to have a series of constructive talks in Doha."
The Reliable Source
February 22, 2010; 1:01 AM ET
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