Turkey ETF Rebounds as Ankara, Washington End Visa Dispute

Casey Dawson
December 29, 2017

The U.S. and Turkey have resumed full reciprocal visa services, ending a diplomatic dispute that began in October after Turkey arrested an employee of the U.S. consulate in Istanbul.

"We welcome the decision of the United States to resume as of today regular visa procedures, by lifting the restrictions applied to our citizens", the Turkish Embassy in the USA said in a statement.

Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu spoke with his USA counterpart Rex Tillerson on the phone about Washington's decision to lift restrictions on visa services, a diplomatic source said late Thursday.

The state department said it was "confident that the security posture has improved sufficiently". But the Turkish embassy in Washington also put out a statement in Turkish disputing the USA claim that it had made such guarantees.

However, the state department also said it still had serious concerns about allegations against its arrested local employees and about cases against U.S. citizens who have been detained under the state of emergency.

Non-immigrant visas include student, tourist, media and work visas.

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There are at least 11 U.S. citizens now under arrest in Turkey.

In November, the United States and Turkish diplomatic missions said they would each resume non-immigrant visa services "on a limited basis", the first sign that strained relations between the two countries were slowly warming. "Turkey is a state of law, and our government has given no assurances with regards to ongoing judicial processes".

"We find it wrong to misinform the Turkish and the American public by claiming that the USA received assurances from Turkey", the mission said.

The Turkish embassy in Washington said, however, that it had not offered any assurances to the USA over its detained staff.

But a statement issued by Turkey denies giving the U.S. any such assurances.

Turkey has for months been pressing Washington to extradite US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen over his alleged role in the botched coup in July 2016.

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