Turkish Erdogan’s Spokesman expects Lira recovery to continue

Turkey Lira meltdown over Turkey US relations

Erdoğan and Trump are locked in a dispute about the United States pastor Andrew Brunson, who was arrested nearly two years ago and accused of plotting against the Turkish government.

Optimism about better relations with the European Union after a Turkish court released two Greek soldiers pending trial and a banking watchdog's step to limit foreign exchange swap transactions have also helped the lira.

Andrew Brunson has been at the heart of the ongoing fight after the US sanctioned two top Turkish officials for his continued detention, and Turkey's vow to retaliate, even as its currency plummets.

The crisis came days after US President Donald Trump announced via Twitter a doubling of steel and aluminium tariffs on Turkey, as Washington pushes Ankara to release Evangelical Christian pastor Andrew Brunson, who is being held on terrorism charges for almost two years.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a news conference Tuesday at the presidential palace in Ankara. Brunson was moved to house arrest in July 2018.

The Turkish government said tariffs on American cars will be doubled to 120 percent while those on alcoholic drinks will be hiked by the same rate to 140 percent.

The Trump administration announced plans on Friday to double USA tariffs imports of steel and aluminum from Turkey. Turkey had previously said it would boycott United States electronic products.

Erdogan said on Tuesday the country will boycott United States electronic goods in response to USA measures meant to punish Turkey.

One Turkish court has rejected an American Christian pastor's appeal to be released from house arrest and for his travel ban to be lifted, but an upper court is yet to rule on the appeal, his lawyer told Reuters on Wednesday.

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A number of other Americans and Turkish employees of the U.S. diplomatic mission were also caught up in the post-coup crackdown.

"But beneath the smiles of joy and relief there will be sorrow, anger and a steely determination. And determination to continue our fight for human rights in Turkey and for the release of all those human rights defenders, journalists and others who have been unjustly jailed in the vicious crackdown".

Turkey is a significant source of global demand for gold, although it lags well behind the world's two largest buyers of the metal, China and India.

While detained awaiting trial, Brunson shared a small cell with 17 Turkish prisoners who were also allegedly in some way affiliated with the Gülen movement.

Turkish President Erdoğan (R) and Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani shake hands in this photo released by the Turkish presidential press service on August 15, 2018.

He added: "The EU will remain engaged in this strategic partnership".

The US doubled tariffs last week over Turkey's refusal to extradite a US pastor who is imprisoned there.

CNN's Isil Sariyuce reported from Istanbul and Laura Smith-Spark wrote from London.

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