“US Risks Completely Losing Turkey”: Erdogan Vows To Defy US “Threats” Over Pastor Brunson

Saturday, August 11, 2018
By Paul Martin

by Tyler Durden
ZeroHedge.com
Sat, 08/11/2018

Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hit back Saturday at US “threats” over detained American pastor Brunson which has escalated tensions between the two NATO allies, sent the Turkish currency into a historic nosedive on Friday and crashed Turkish capital markets.

“It is wrong to dare bring Turkey to its knees through threats over a pastor,” Erdogan lashed out during a rally in the Black Sea town of Unye.

“I am calling on those in America again. Shame on you, shame on you. You are exchanging your strategic partner in NATO for a priest.”

“They are threatening us. You cannot tame our people with threats” but perhaps a collapse in the stock market will suffice: the Turkish lira crashed as much as 20% against the dollar on Friday, its biggest drop on record, after President Trump announced he would double steel and aluminium tariffs on Turkey, adding to pressure to Turkey’s troubled economy. The White House has said the newly-imposed sanctions would take effect from August 13.

Turkey remains at an impasse with the United States in one of the worst diplomatic spats in years over the nearly two-year detention of American pastor Andrew Brunson and a host of other issues. But Erdogan urged Turks not to be panicked by the currency crisis, saying on Friday that “if they have the dollar, we have Allah.”

He also advised them to show solidarity by converting any stashed-away gold or foreign currency to Turkish lira in a bid to wage a “war of independence” against America.

Commenting on the possibility of Brunson’s release, Erdogan said Turkey will act in accordance with the law, saying: “We have not made concessions on justice so far, and we will never make any.”

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