US Treasury Secretary Hints at More Sanctions for Turkey

The development comes amid rising tensions between Turkey and its NATO ally

The development comes amid rising tensions between Turkey and its NATO ally

Deepening a spat that has rattled financial markets and threated to split a long-standing defence and political alliance, Mnuchin on Thursday suggested the next spiral of tit-for-tat sanctions was coming soon.

Back then the Turkish ambassador to Qatar noted: "Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani was the first leader to call President Erdogan and express support to our government and Turkish people". "We have other partnerships and alternative markets".

Erdogan has said Turkey needs to find "new friends" because of the row with the its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally.

Commenting on the move, the USA leader said: "I have just authorised a doubling of tariffs on steel and aluminium with respect to Turkey as their currency, the Turkish lira, slides rapidly downwards against our very strong dollar".

Turkey's biggest mobile phone importing companies have cancelled their iPhone orders as Turkish citizens join a move to boycott United States products. "We will boycott the electronics products of the U.S".

"But one could hardly say the same about Turkey's announced tariffs on American cars, alcohol, and tobacco".

Last Friday, U.S. President Donald Trump said he had authorised higher tariffs on aluminium and steel imports from Turkey.

Washington has new sanctions ready to go if Turkey persists in refusing to release a jailed American pastor, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

"We got somebody out for him", Trump said, referring to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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But the U.S. insists Andrew Brunson, a long-time Turkish resident who ran the tiny Izmir Resurrection Church, is "a victim of unfair and unjust detention". Brunson is accused of backing a 2016 coup attempt against Erdogan, which Brunson denies. Appearing alongside him, Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said "the era of bullying must end".

The country's currency, the lira, has fallen sharply against the US dollar in recent weeks but rebounded after the aid announcement.

There was also optimism about better relations with the European Union after a Turkish court released two Greek soldiers pending trial.

Lavrov echoed Erdogan's calls for countries to use their national currencies rather than the dollar in global trade, but there were no firm commitments on help for Turkey.

Turkey's foreign minister said Ankara did not want any problems with Washington.

"Rates have gone up by 10 percent. The central bank has not done this through a change in the benchmark rates, but they are squeezing liquidity, so the result is the same", Mr Maggio said.

The Turkish currency was trading at 5.85 at 1740 GMT, more than 1 percent stronger on the day.

The International Monetary Fund urged Turkey to adopt sound economic policies to promote stability and reduce imbalances at a time of market volatility, Reuters reported, citing comments Wednesday by an unidentified spokesperson for the agency.

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