President Trump has warned Turkey of economic devastation if it attacks Kurdish forces in the wake of the US troop pullout from Syria, while also urging the Kurds not to “provoke” Ankara. “Will devastate Turkey economically if they hit Kurds,” Trump tweeted, while pushing for the creation of a 20-mile ‘safe zone’. He then added: “Likewise, do not want the Kurds to provoke Turkey.”
Despite a high-profile visit by U.S. officials to Turkey this week, the two nations remain at odds over the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Syria, specifically the implications for America’s Kurdish allies in Syria. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rebuffed National Security Adviser John Bolton on Tuesday, refusing a meeting and expressing frustration in the messaging from Bolton and others that Erdogan says differs from what he said was a deal with Trump, signaling he’d prefer to communicate with the president instead.
American Pastor Andrew Brunson met with President Trump and thanked him for his work after being freed from his two-year detainment in a Turkish prison. Trump thanked Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for facilitating Brunson’s release. At least 22 people were killed when a lorry carrying migrants headed to Greece’s Samos Island crashed in Turkey.
In the latest move in the expanding dispute between Washington and Ankara, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called for a boycott of American electronics including the iPhone on Tuesday. The escalating feud with the Trump administration has caused the Turkish Lira to hit record lows. Experts fear the wider consequences of Turley’s economic crisis.
The Turkish Lira plunged to a new record low in Asian trading following President Trump’s announcement that tariffs on Turkish aluminum and steel will be doubled. The Lira lost 20% of its value against the dollar on Friday. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned those who try to ‘bully’ Turkey in response to the announcement.
The Trump administration imposed sanctions on Wednesday on two top Turkish government officials over the detainment of an American pastor held on espionage charges. The unprecedented use of financial sanctions against an allied government causing US-Turkey relations to plummet. Turkey’s Foreign Ministry called the action a ‘hostile stance’ and said it will retaliate.
President Trump announced the imposition of ‘large sanctions’ on Turkey on Thursday following the detainment of an American pastor accused of aiding a failed coup attempt in 2016. Trump officially spoke about Andrew Brunson’s release with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in June. A Turkish court ordered Brunson to house arrest while his trial continues.
Turkey’s two-year state of emergency ended at midnight on Wednesday as the government prepares new anti-terrorism laws for security threats. The state of emergency began in 2016 when a failed coup attempt killed 250. A Turkish court ignored pleas from the US government and ordered an American pastor accused of espionage to remain incarcerated.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan was sworn in as Turkey’s President on Monday for a five-year term under a new Constitution which gives him sweeping executive powers. Erdogan appointed his son-in-law finance minister hours after being sworn in. Erdogan promised a ‘strong government and a strong Turkey.’ Opponents fear Erdogan’s new executive powers could destroy democracy.
The primary challenger to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Muharrem Ince, conceded defeat on Monday, but warned of a ‘one-man regime.’ International election observers said Turkey’s election gave the opposition ‘no equal opportunities’ but did not find evidence of widespread rigging. Britain and other Western governments accepted Erdogan’s win and vowed continued cooperation with Turkey.