Turkey Submits Complaint to US Justice Department Over Trial

Turkey’s Justice Minister has filed a complaint to the U.S. Justice Department and a letter expressing resentment and anger over what it says the role of Gulen movement in a high-profile U.S. case.

“We are deeply saddened that the American legal system has been used as an instrument for such an organizTurkey’s Justice Minister has filed a complaint to the U.S. Justice Department and a letter expressing resentment and anger over what it says the role of Gulen movement in a high-profile U.S. case. ation,” Turkish Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul wrote in a letter to the U.S. Justice Department, Turkey’s official Anadolu news agency reported.

The sanctions trial has strained ties between Turkey and the U.S.

Turkish banker Mehmet Hakan Atilla is currently the sole defendant in a case where former Turkish Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan, former Halkbank chief manager Suleyman Aslan face charges of violating the U.S. sanctions against Iran by helping Turkish-Iranian businessman Reza Zarrab in his gold-for-oil scheme to facilitate Tehran’s international payments through Turkey’s state-owned Halkbank.

To the chagrin of the Turkish authorities, Mr. Zarrab became a witness in the trial and testified at the courtroom, unleashing revelations that reverberated across Turkey.

Ankara says Gulenists infiltrated U.S. legal system and initiated the case against the Turkish banker. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu even suggested former U.S. prosecutor Preet Bharara is close to U.S.-based cleric Gulen.

The former prosecutor strongly denied such charges as ridiculous.

On Monday, Turkish media reported that Turkey’s authorities are seriously contemplating to bring the case to the U.N. and Hague, citing Turkey’s national sovereignty.

“The United States is now against the international law. Only the U.N. can take decisions that bind the states,” Mustafa Sentop, presidential aide and a constitutional law expert said.

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