Trump warns Turkey after court rejects freedom for United States pastor
- Author: Anthony Vega Aug 18, 2018,
Aug 18, 2018, 1:16
But a few hours later US Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin assured president Donald Trump at a cabinet meeting that sanctions were ready to be put in place if US pastor Andrew Brunson, who is on house arrest in Turkey over terrorism charges, is not released.
The currency has lost almost 40 percent against the dollar this year, driven by worries over Erdogan's growing influence on the economy and his repeated calls for lower interest rates despite high inflation.
"We have more that we're planning to do if they don't release him quickly", Mnuchin said during a White House cabinet meeting on Thursday, according to pool reporters.
Trump prefaced Mnuchin's remarks by saying that Turkey had not been a very good friend.
Another steep decline in the Turkish lira on Friday pushed emerging market equities lower and kept other world markets cautious, overshadowing hopes that an upcoming U.S. "Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!"
In a conference call with thousands of investors and economists, Albayrak - who is Erdogan's son-in-law, said Turkey fully understood and recognised all of its domestic challenges, but was dealing with what he described as a market anomaly.
FILE PHOTO: U.S. Dollar banknotes are seen in this photo illustration taken February 12, 2018.
In a tweet later on Thursday, Trump said the United States "will pay nothing" for Brunson's release, "but we are cutting back on Turkey!" His transfer to house arrest came after Trump asked Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to assist in Brunson's release, Israeli and USA officials told CNN at the time.
"The trade talks and the back and forth on Turkey is really going to be the stuff everybody's watching", said Blake Gwynn, an interest rate strategist at NatWest Markets in Stamford, Connecticut.
Mr Erdogan earlier wrote in the New York Times that unless the United States changed course, Turkey would look for new friends and allies. But when Russian Federation imposed sanctions on Turkey's tourism, construction and food sectors, Erdogan quickly backed down.
Investors are concerned that Turkey's has amassed high levels of foreign debt to fuel growth in recent years, and as the currency drops, that debt becomes more expensive to repay, leading to potential bankruptcies.
Last month, at Brunson's third court hearing in almost two years, U.S. officials thought they had brokered a deal to free him by pressuring Israel to release a Turkish citizen imprisoned there.
Turkey has accused Brunson of espionage and having ties to the Kurdistan Workers Party and the movement led by cleric Fethullah Gulen.