US actions regarding pastor Brunson disrespectful to Turkey: Erdogan

Turkey threatens to retaliate over US sanctions in escalating dispute between Nato allies

Erdogan's comments, in a speech in Ankara, came two days after Washington imposed sanctions on two Turkish ministers over the trial of a USA pastor accused of backing terrorism. "As do all the Americans being held by the Turkish government", he added.

The sanctions, announced Wednesday, allow the US government to target individuals and companies involved in corruption or human-rights abuses, which in this case include Turkey's justice and interior ministers. It urged Trump to reconsider the sanctions.

He was accused of helping supporters of Fethullah Gulen, a US-based cleric who Turkish authorities say masterminded the coup attempt in which 250 people were killed.

The evangelical preacher, who had led a small congregation in the western Turkish city of Izmir for more than 20 years, was detained in October 2016.

Brunson was in a Turkish prison for 21 months until he was transferred to house arrest last week.

The pastor, who has lived in Turkey for more than 20 years, faces as many as 35 years in jail if found guilty.

"We have said from the start that the other side's threatening language and sanctions will not get any result".

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said he and Pompeo agreed to move forward with diplomatic negotiations.

"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.

Hamilton 'would have struggled' to hold off Vettel
Renault's Nico Hulkenberg stopped on track with an engine problem and missed the last half hour of that early session. This essentially handed Mercedes a 1-2 on the starting grid, with Valtteri Bottas alongside Hamilton.

Speaking to Turkish television channels, Cavusoglu struck an upbeat tone.

"Of course you can't expect all issues to be resolved in a single meeting", he told Turkish television channels.

"The two countries have a strong, historical relationship".

Erdogan said Turkey will never step back from defence industry projects, saying 48 out of the 400 projects are related to the defence industry.

He said the sanctions are meant to show Turkey that the U.S. is "serious" about the issue.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said that Brunson was a "victim of unfair and unjust attention by the government of Turkey" as she announced sanctions.

It is unclear who that would affect, due to differing Cabinet roles in the United States than in Turkey, or if the intended officials even have any holdings in Turkey.

Some analysts have argued Turkey is wary of allowing any further escalation in the crisis, which has already sent the lira to record lows in value against the dollar of above 5 for the first time.

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