Interestingly, anyone who has followed Turkish geopolitics closely will likely note a confrontation on ideology was bound to happen. The triggering event has become the Turkish imprisonment of American Pastor Andrew Brunson.
Turkey has always been a tenuous NATO ally. The totalitarian behavior of Turksih President Recep Erdogan has generally been antithetical to freedom and U.S. interests. There have been many examples of sketchy Turkish interests in the past decade – SEE HERE – including Erdogan’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood and providing safe-harbor for the exiled Brotherhood leadership.
ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey on Friday “implored” U.S. President Donald Trump to return to the negotiating table on tariffs, saying the trade rift between the NATO allies should be resolved through dialogue.
Trump intensified his spat with Ankara by imposing higher tariffs on metal imports, putting unprecedented economic pressure on a NATO ally and deepening turmoil in Turkish financial markets.
The announcement accelerated the sell-off of Turkey’s lira currency, already battered by worries about President Tayyip Erdogan’s influence over the central bank. The lira tumbled as much as 20 percent on Friday, its biggest one-day drop since 2001.
“Repeated efforts to communicate to the U.S. administration that none of the stated criteria driving America’s tariffs are applicable to Turkey have thus far proven fruitless,” Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan said in a statement.
“Nevertheless, we implore President Trump to return to the negotiating table – this can and should be resolved through dialogue and cooperation.”
Trump, outraged by Turkey’s detention of an American evangelical pastor on terrorism charges, said on Twitter he would double duties on Turkish aluminum and steel, to 20 percent and 50 percent respectively. (read more)