Turkey court rejects another appeal to free US pastor: lawyer

Australia Suffers Through Worst Drought in 400 Years

Australia Suffers Through Worst Drought in 400 Years

President Donald Trump last week ramped up his attack on Turkey by doubling USA tariffs on Turkish aluminium and steel imports.

"We've already responded based on the World Trade Organization rules and will continue to do so", Pekcan was quoted as saying by the state-run Anadolu news agency. He faces 35 years in prison on espionage and terror-related charges.

The lira has lost almost 40 percent of its value against the dollar this year as investors fret about President Tayyip Erdogan's influence over monetary policy.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said additional USA sanctions are ready if Turkey refuses to release an American pastor whom the Trump administration says is illegally detained.

He said early on Friday that Turkey had "taken advantage of the United States for many years" and that he was "cutting back on Turkey".

Dashing hopes for a quick solution to the dispute, a Turkish court on Friday rejected an appeal for the pastor's release from house detention.

A court refused to release Mr Brunson, and the the government in Ankara increased tariffs on imports from the U.S. of cars, alcoholic drinks and leaf tobacco - and the lira recovered slightly.

More news: White House says Turkey treated pastor 'badly'
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The president has remained defiant, calling on Turks to sell their gold and dollars for lira, describing the crisis as an "economic war". Both Brunson and top U.S. officials say the accusations are false. "They also shared with our president that the Trump administration's tendency to use trade, dollars, taxes as weapons was wrong".

"Both men are seeking to increase their votes by creating an enemy". We'll see what happens.

Turkish markets will be closed from midday on Monday for the rest of the week for the Muslim Eid al-Adha festival.

The lira's free-fall was likewise stemmed by the implementation by Turkey's central bank of policies that make it more hard to borrow money.

Turkey is struggling to stabilize its currency after it plunged to a record low in a crisis that spurred fears of bankruptcies and a spillover effect in other emerging markets if Turkish firms can't pay back high foreign debt. "These could still crystallise over the coming weeks and months, potentially making the crisis more acute".

However, analysts are calling for a sharp hike in interest rates - which Erdogan adamantly opposes because it will put a brake on economic growth.

Erdogan wrote in an op-ed last week for The New York Times: "The Turkish people expected the United States to unequivocally condemn the attack and express solidarity with Turkey's elected leadership".

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