FM Çavuşoğlu discusses visa crisis with United States counterpart Tillerson

FM Çavuşoğlu discusses visa crisis with United States counterpart Tillerson

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag says delegations from both countries will meet to work on a solution to a visa row.


Turkey and the US have agreed to work to resolve the diplomatic row between the countries, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said Thursday.

The comments came a day after Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan suggested Bass may have gone rogue in suspending visa services over the arrest of a second Turkish employee of the USA diplomatic mission last week, a claim rejected by US officials later on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters at his residence in Ankara, Ambassador John Bass said the decision to freeze visa services from US missions in Turkey stems from a conclusion that two Turkish citizens who worked for the embassy were detained for their work on behalf of the American government. It lasted more than 30 minutes, Turkish media said.

If the decision was made after discussion with senior officials, "then we have nothing to discuss with the administration", he said.

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Former economy minister Zafer Caglayan and Halkbank executive Mehmet Hakan Atilla were charged with conspiring to violate United States sanctions on Iran.

Deputy Prime Minister Bozdag said that he didn't agree with the ambassador holding a conference with journalists and said that if Bass wanted information concerning the legal proceedings, there were formal diplomatic avenues in place, such as sending a lawyer and contacting the Foreign Ministry, that should be utilised.

U.S. Secretary of State Tillerson on Wednesday expressed "profound concern" to his Turkish counterpart over the detention of local employees of U.S. diplomatic missions in Turkey, according to the U.S. State Department.

Turkish authorities, commenting on the arrest of the Consulate General's employee, noted that he had links with the movement of Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of being involved in the 2016 military coup attempt in Turkey.

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