Pompeo Leans on Turkey to Release Pastor Brunson: 'The Clock's Run Out'

US imposes sanctions on Turkey as Lira drops and Turkey threatens retaliation

Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Erdogan talks to supporters in Istanbul

Top diplomats from Turkey and the United States agreed on Friday to work towards a solution to the diplomatic spat that has erupted over the arrest of a U.S. pastor, which has already resulted in Washington slapping sanctions on Ankara.

"Since the beginning we have said that a solution can not be reached by using threatening language and sanctions", the minister added.

"The Turks were on notice that.it was time for Pastor Brunson to be returned", Pompeo told reporters in Singapore.

The official went on to say he and Pompeo also discussed steps to strengthen ties between the two countries despite the new sanctions from the U.S.

Brunson is being tried on espionage and terror-related charges, which he and the USA government vehemently deny.

The US treasury announced measures last night against Suleyman Soylu, the interior minister, and Abdulhamit Gul, the justice minister, in response to the treatment of Andrew Brunson, an American.

Also Turkish Foreign Minister said he told US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that threats and sanctions will not work, after Washington targeted Turkish ministers over the detention of an American pastor. Speculative actions in financial markets following the announcement of the sanctions would be rendered void, he said.

Family of missing U.S. student crowdfund for her return: ‘She’s out there’
He said the group exists for people who can not come forward to police, including those who are guilty or involved in a crime. On the day she disappeared , her brother dropped Tibbetts off at her boyfriend's house so she could dog-sit, HLN reported.

The Erdogan government has vowed to retaliate against the USA sanctions, announced Wednesday, but has not revealed what they will be.

Pompeo met with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on the sidelines of a Southeast Asian security conference in Singapore.

"The decision, which disrespectfully intervenes in our judicial system, will seriously damage the constructive efforts made in order to resolve problems between the two countries", Ankara's foreign ministry said.

The evangelical pastor, who is originally from Black Mountain, North Carolina, has lived in western Turkey for 23 years.

Under the sanctions to be imposed by the Treasury Department, any property, or interest in property, belonging to Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul or Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu within USA jurisdiction would be blocked.

He is accused of carrying out activities on behalf of two groups viewed by Ankara as terrorists: the movement of the US-led Muslim preacher Fethullah Gulen blamed for the July 2016 coup attempt and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). The sanctions also prevent American citizens from doing any business with the two ministers. He risks up to 35 years in prison if found guilty.

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