USA threatens more Turkey sanctions if pastor not freed

President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan greets the crowd during a symposium organized by the Foundation for Political Economic and Social Research at the ATO Congresium Hall in Ankara

US says ready with more sanctions if Turkey does not free pastor

President Trump has made it clear that he is not resting on Pastor Andrew's case, and the US will not cave to Turkey and their outlandish demands.

The Turkish lira stood at 5.80 per dollar on Friday, up about 0.4 percent against the dollar.

The Turkish currency dropped to 6.0700 against the dollar yesterday, having hit a record low of 7.2149 on Monday.

USA treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin warned the country will turn up the heat on under-fire president Recep Tayyip Erdogan by imposing more crippling sanctions if Turkey refuses to free American pastor Andrew Brunson.

"They are now holding our wonderful Christian pastor, who I must now ask to represent our Country as a great patriot hostage".

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The White House host added that "we will pay nothing for the release of an innocent man, but we are cutting back on Turkey!"

One currency trader said Friday's lira weakness was driven by "the new USA sanctions threat and the S&P decision, with position-closing in markets ahead of the public holiday".

Rattled markets ended a rollercoaster week on the back foot after the Turkish lira's recovery suffered a setback with tensions mounting with the US.

Brunson has been detained in Turkey for nearly two years for his alleged involvement in a failed coup against Erdogan's regime. "We have more that we are planning to do if they don't release him [Andrew Brunson] quickly".

Analysts say Turkey is also likely to seek a more dynamic economic relationship with China and Russian Federation, with whom ties have warmed considerably in recent years.

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We recently told you that Pastor Andrew had been released from a Turkish prison and was allowed to return to his house in Turkey where he now remains under house arrest.

Though Turkey's financial troubles did not originate with the battle over Brunson's release, the moves have sped up the Turkish economy's decline.

The Turkish leader's communications director, Fahrettin Altun, wrote on Twitter, "We are fending off this economic coup attempt with the wisdom of the Turkish nation and the leadership of our president".

"So, we haven't seen the last of that". "The Europeans will maintain the existing objections to certain Erdogan policies and continue to voice their concerns, but that won't stop them from developing pragmatic cooperation with Turkey", he said.

Erdogan has remained defiant in the face of the crisis with Washington, saying Turkey could turn to new alternative markets.

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"Turkey has taken advantage of the United States for many years".

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