Relations between the US and Turkey have deteriorated of late for various reasons, including the detention of US pastor Andrew Brunson, the purchase of Russian-made weapons systems by Ankara and tariff issues.
According to Turkish presidential spokesman İbrahim Kalın, Ankara has been deeply disappointed by Washington’s actions, which had almost broken ties between the countries.
“Because of one pastor, the US brought relations with a country like Turkey, almost to a complete halt. They know perfectly well our attitude towards the Workers’ Party of Kurdistan (PKK) and promised to do something about it, but in reality, their approach didn’t satisfy us. The is still a problem with FETO, whose head is still in the US, he is working there, his schools are working, his activities are continuing. Our disappointment is profound,” he told reporters.
A lawyer for the evangelical pastor Andrew Brunson, detained by the Turkish authorities in 2016, stated that a higher court had yet to rule on the appeal to the case, which raised tensions between the countries.
An Izmir court meanwhile has rejected an appeal to release US pastor Brunson from house arrest and lift his travel ban, CNN reported on Wednesday, citing judicial sources. However, according to Brunson’s lawyer, the upper court hasn’t handed out a verdict yet.
Brunson’s case is one of the most important reasons for the recent row between Ankara and Washington. Last Friday US President Donald Trump authorized doubling of tariffs on steel and aluminum from Ankara, while Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced retaliatory measures against Washington.