Erdogan: US is being governed by ambassador in Ankara


Erdogan: US is being governed by ambassador in Ankara

Other points of contention are the imprisonment of Erdoğan's personal security guards over their brawl with protesters in Washington in May 2017 and Ankara's demand for the extradition of USA -based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, who Ankara accuses of masterminding the July 2016 coup attempt.

The US mission in Turkey announced on Sunday that it had stopped all non-immigrant visa services amid concerns over "the security of US mission and (its) personnel".

Turkey felt many allies were slow to condemn the coup attempt and failed to appreciate the danger it faced.

Erdogan also rebuffed criticism of Turkey's arrest of the consulate employee, alleging he had ties to USA -based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Turkey accuses of masterminding a coup attempt previous year. Western countries have grown alarmed at the scale of Turkey's post-coup crackdown, with 50,000 people detained and 150,000 suspended from work.

The United States says it is still seeking an explanation for the arrest - the second detention of a consulate worker this year.

A diplomatic crisis between the United States and Turkey that led them to stop issuing visas to each other's citizens is "overblown" and will likely be resolved soon, Turkish deputy prime minister Mehmet Simsek said on Wednesday.

Ambassador Bass told reporters on Wednesday the U.S. government had still not received any official explanation from the Turkish government for why the employee was arrested.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu have discussed "mutual visa suspension issue" over phone.

"Let me be very clear, the person who caused this is the ambassador here". Erdogan had been encouraging the impression that Bass acted without approval from Washington, a view that gained traction after several days of silence from the State Department and White House. "It is unacceptable for the sacrifice a strategic partnership for an impertinent ambassador who doesn't know his place", Erdogan told at a provincial governors' meeting in Ankara. Erdogan alleges the third staff member is hiding inside the Istanbul consulate, a claim Bass has denied. Gulen, who denies plotting the insurrection, is wanted in Turkey, but USA officials are still processing an extradition request.

He said Washington was defending a "FETO-linked person hiding in your consulate", and said a Christian pastor arrested in western Turkey previous year was also "clearly linked" to Gulen.

"The information that a second person is there shows something is going on at the consulate in Istanbul", Erdogan said, adding that the USA should evaluate how such "agents" infiltrated the mission or who placed them there.

"If an ambassador in Ankara is governing the United States, it is a shame", Erdogan added. They should have told him he could not act like that to a strategic ally.

Ambassador Bass said this week no one was hiding in the USA consulate, and that he had seen nothing of merit in the charges against the pastor, Andrew Brunson.



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