Turkey's Cavusoglu tells US' Pompeo threats and sanctions won't work


The case is now at the centre of a bitter row between North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies Ankara and Washington after the U.S. on Wednesday imposed sanctions on the Turkish justice and interior ministers claiming they played a major role in the arrest and detention of the pastor.

United States media reported there had been a deal with Turkey to free Brunson after Washington's ally Israel released a Turkish woman held on terror charges.

"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.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, who is set to meet US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in the next few days, also warned that the move "will not go without response".

Cavusoglu, in comments to Turkish broadcasters, said he and Pompeo had also discussed potential joint steps the two countries could take regarding Syria's Idlib and Manbij.

Before the meeting, Pompeo told reporters that he hoped Turkey would see that the sanctions were "a demonstration that we're very serious".

US President Donald Trump and his Vice President Mike Pence had threatened Turkey with "large sanctions" last week if Brunson was not immediately released.

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

After reports that the United States would sanction individuals over the case, the lira hit a record low of 5.01 against the dollar, before rallying slightly to 4.9.

He acknowledged "lots of challenges" with Turkey, but said Washington and Ankara had been able to work closely and well together.

The NATO allies are also at odds over the Syrian war, Turkey's plan to buy missile defences from Russian Federation and the USA conviction of a Turkish state bank executive on Iran sanctions-busting charges this year.

NASA scientist Serkan Golge, a U.S. Although he was released to home detention, he faces a prison sentence of up to 35 years if he is convicted on both counts at the end of his ongoing trial.

The Turkish leader has previously connected Brunson's return to the U.S.to the extradition of Fethullah Gulen, an exiled Turkish cleric who lives in Pennsylvania. He was also charged with supporting outlawed PKK Kurdish militants.

Turkey has been trying to have Gulen extradited from the United States for two years.