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Turkey’s Erdogan to Reveal 100-Day Action Plan For New Presidential Term

After being re-elected as president of Turkey in the new political system, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan prepares to unveil a 100-day action plan this Friday, his spokesman said on Tuesday.

Presidential Spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said that the president will lay out the main pillars of his extensive agenda with a press conference.

At a press briefing in Ankara at the presidential palace, Kalin also dwelled upon on the unfolding diplomatic dispute between Turkey and the U.S. over the ongoing detention of Pastor Andrew Brunson.

He dismissed outside interference in Turkey’s judicial affairs and said the issue should be left to the judiciary.

“Everybody should respect the ongoing trial process. It is not right to tell the Turkish judiciary to “do that, do this” with instruction from outside,” he said.

Turkey’s relations with the U.S. faces a new, tough test over the trial of Evangelical Pastor Brunson who faces up to 35 years in prison on charges of “espionage and abetting terrorist organizations.”

Last week, he was moved from a jail to house arrest with a travel ban and extensive judicial oversight. His lawyer appealed to the court on Monday to remove the house arrest and travel ban. But the court in the western province of Izmir rejected that appeal on Tuesday.

While the U.S. administration initially welcomed Brunson’s release, the house arrest fell short of their expectation for a full-fledged release. Ties, already tested by a wide array of thorny issues, quickly plunged into a new spat after the escalation of inflammatory and threatening rhetoric on both sides.

U.S. President Donald J. Trump said the U.S. will impose large sanctions against Turkey. His threat of sanctions only sparked a stinging rebuke from the Turkish president who vowed that Turkey would not back down in the face of such threats.

After President Erdogan‘s defiant remarks on Sunday, Vice President Mike Pence on Monday reiterated the U.S. threat to slap Turkey with sanctions if Brunson is not released.

Under consideration for potential sanctions is to block international financial loans to Turkey whose economy is under great stress over a rising inflation, a struggling lira and ballooning account deficit in addition to huge foreign debt.

The other possible move the U.S. may make is to suspend delivery of F-35 fighter jets to Turkey. Ankara appears furious over contemplation of blocking transfer of F-35s.

Kalin said Turkey has already made $900 million payment and would seek arbitration at international courts if the delivery is blocked.

Regarding the threat of sanctions, the spokesman said Turkey is not without alternatives.

Pence Renews Threat of Sanctions Against Turkey Over Pastor Brunson

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