US official warns of more actions against Turkey if pastor not freed

Turkey Lira meltdown over Turkey US relations

Turkey Lira Worsening relations between the US and Turkey have contributed to the lira's free-fall

Turkey's Vice President Fuat Oktay commented on the move, stating: "Under the principle of reciprocity, the tax rates for imports of certain products have been increased against the U.S. administration's conscious attacks on our economy".

A calculation by Bloomberg shows the items listed in the decree accounted for $1 billion of imports past year, similar to the amount of Turkish steel and aluminum exports that were subjected to higher tariffs by President Donald Trump last week.

Brunson is at the center of a diplomatic spat between North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies Turkey and the United States, which has helped trigger a Turkish currency crisis.

The decree, which was signed by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, raised tariffs on alcoholic beverages by 140%, on tobacco by 60%, and on passenger cars by 120%.

The decree said the move brought tariffs to 50 percent on imports of USA rice, 140 percent on hard alcoholic drinks like spirits, 60 percent on leaf tobacco and 60 percent on cosmetics.

Qatar on Wednesday promised to make a $15 billion direct investment in Turkey, badly hit by a currency crisis amid a widening diplomatic standoff with the United States, officials said.

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The launch was initially supposed to take place on July 31, but several technical issues pushed the attempt back to Aug 11. It was the first rocket launch ever witnessed by Parker, professor emeritus at the University of Chicago.

The decision to impose new tariffs came a day after Erdogan said Turkey would boycott US electronic goods, singling out iPhones.

Moves by the central bank to ensure Turkish banks have liquidity and a planned conference call by Turkish Finance Minister Berat Albayrak, who is Erdogan's son-in-law, on Thursday have gone some way to giving reassurance to investors.

According to Al Shafi, Qataris have recently bought tens of millions of dollars' worth of Turkish lira with a view to supporting the Turkish economy.

The White House says "we won't forget" how Turkey has treated a detained American pastor, after a court rejected his appeal for release. "We have other partnerships and alternative markets".

Turkish officials have also been keen to emphasise that Ankara wants to retain strong ties with Europe, which has also expressed deep unease with Trump's trade policies.

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