Detained Pastor Brunson causing Turkey-U.S. tension files fresh appeal

LEADING ARTICLEAugust 13 2018 5:00pm The Times Tantrum in Turkey Erdogan should end his spat with the West if he wants to avert a deeper crisis

LEADING ARTICLEAugust 13 2018 5:00pm The Times Tantrum in Turkey Erdogan should end his spat with the West if he wants to avert a deeper crisis

Erdoğan has today threatened to boycott American-made electronic goods in response to USA sanctions against Turkey that sent the value of its currency, the lira, into freefall.

The investment package was announced after Qatar's Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani met President Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara, as Turkey grapples with a collapse in the lira and tensions with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally the United States.

Mr Erdogan suggested Turkey would stop procuring US-made iPhones and buy Korean Samsung or Turkish-made Vestel devices instead.

Turkey sought to face down the USA and currency traders as its president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, reportedly received support from the German chancellor, Angela Merkel.

Even though a meeting between National Security Adviser John Bolton and Turkey's USA ambassador on Monday yielded no public progress, the White House is now leading the talks with Turkey over Brunson's release and a host of other issues that have dragged down the alliance.

Neither the White House, Turkey's Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor Apple immediately responded to a request for comment.

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President Erdogan said Turkey was taking measures to stabilise the economy, and should not "give in to the enemy" by investing in foreign currencies. Brunson is now on trial and held on house arrest, with few indications that Turkish officials intend to comply with the demands - despite USA sanctions that were leveled against them two weeks ago.

Brunson's lawyer said on Tuesday he had launched a fresh appeal to a Turkish court for the pastor's release.

Turkish currency tumbled low over deteriorating relations with the United States as President Donald Trump unexpectedly doubled metal tariffs against the Muslim state on Friday.

Brunson, who has lived for two decades in Turkey, was arrested in 2016 and charged with having terrorist connections.

"We, as the Turkish Airlines, stand by our state and our people".

The Turkish lira plummeted to a record low on Monday, losing almost 40 percent of its value since the start of 2018. They also said Turkey should work to resolve the situation with the United States diplomatically while also improving relations with another major trading partner, the European Union.

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Following the latest announcement, Turkey's presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin has called on the U.S.to engage in diplomacy.

Worldwide investors are anxious about Turkey's high amount of debt held in foreign currencies, especially the dollar.

A number of other Americans and Turkish employees of the U.S. diplomatic mission were also caught up in the post-coup crackdown.

Turkey's central bank has promised to provide banks with liquidity.

Amid calls to "burn" the dollars, the group headed to a bank branch where they converted the money, it said.

A previous appeal by Halavurt on behalf of Brunson was rejected by the court.

Turkey's Erdogan calls on Turks to buy lira for 'national battle'
It comes as US President Donald Trump doubled tariffs on Turkish steel and aluminium, further hurting the lira . The diplomatic rift between the countries has made the Turkish lira set multiple record lows in the past week.

Other issues dividing the NATO allies are the United States failure to extradite FETO leader Fetullah Gulen, and USA support for the YPG, the Syrian arm of the PKK terrorist organisation.

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