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Turkey-US crisis could end instantly if pastor freed: Bolton

Ensonhaber.com 2018-08-22 14:14:19

Turkey could end its lira-battering crisis with the US instantly by freeing a detained American pastor, President Donald Trump’s national security adviser said.

The Turkish currency has been targeted in a series of economic attacks since Washington ordered tariffs in retaliation for the detention of Pastor Andrew Brunson on charges of complicity in a failed 2016 coup.


“Look, the Turkish government made a big mistake in not releasing Pastor Brunson,” Donald Trump’s national security adviser Bolton told Reuters in an interview during a visit to Israel. “Every day that goes by that mistake continues, this crisis could be over instantly if they did the right thing as a NATO ally, part of the West, and release pastor Brunson without condition.”

Asked if the US questioned Turkey’s membership in NATO given the stand-off, Bolton said: “That’s not an issue at the moment. We’re focused on Pastor Brunson and the other Americans that the Turkish government’s holding illegitimately and we expect that to get resolved.”

Qatar’s Emir this month approved a package of economic projects, including a $15 billion pledge of support, for Turkey, giving a boost to a lira that has lost some 37 percent of its value this year.