Turkish Officials to Boycott Meetings with US Ambassador: Erdogan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Turkey says it is halting all visa services for Americans at its diplomatic missions in the United States in a tit-for-tat move after the USA administration made a similar announcement.

The Turkish Embassy in Washington retaliated immediately by issuing a similar statement that mirrored the one by the US.

But a later version said: "This measure will apply to sticker visas as well as e-Visas and border visas", leaving open the question of whether USA travellers who already have visas would be allowed to enter Turkey. Last week, a US consulate employee in Istanbul was arrested on charges of links to a cleric blamed for last year's failed coup, a move condemned by Washington as baseless and damaging to ties between the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies.

Metin Topuz is accused of espionage and "attempting to overthrow the Turkish government and constitution". Bass is at the end of his posting and is due to leave Turkey at the weekend. The U.S. Embassy said it was "deeply disturbed" by the arrest. The suspended services will affect business, tourism, medical treatment, student, exchange visitor, crew member, media and journalist, treaty trader, diplomatic and official visas. -Turkish tensions have risen over US military support for Kurdish YPG fighters in Syria, considered by Ankara to be an extension of the banned PKK, which has waged an insurgency for three decades in southeast Turkey.

"Trying a Turkish citizen for a crime committed in Turkey is our right".

Erdogan said that "a lot of work" had to be done to achieve this goal, in particular, it was necessary to reach the final stage of the signing of the free trade agreement and switch to its practical implementation.

US pastor Andrew Brunson, who has lived in Turkey for over 20 years, has also been behind bars for a year for alleged links to Gulen.

More than 50,000 people have been arrested and 110,000 have been fired from government jobs as part of a state of emergency declared after the failed coup in Turkey.

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