Turkey’s top diplomat won’t buckle to US ‘impositions’
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey won’t buckle under U.S. “impositions,” its foreign minister said Wednesday as officials from both countries met to try to resolve a diplomatic dispute that resulted in the mutual suspension of traveler visas for each other’s citizens.
Speaking at a news conference with his Portuguese counterpart, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu decried what he described as Washington’s “immature diplomatic approach” and criticized the effect of the “needless crisis” on Turkish citizens.
However, a Turkish official said the talks were proceeding in a “positive” manner and that representatives for both sides agreed to keep talking.
They also held “constructive” negotiations on establishing a joint committee to discuss “judiciary and security issues,” according to the official.
The Turkish official discussed the meeting on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the talks.
Strained ties between the two NATO allies deepened last week after Turkish authorities detained a Turkish employee of the U.S. Consulate in Istanbul.
The U.S. halted most visa services for Turkish citizens at U.S. missions. Turkey retaliated by halting visa services in the U.S. for Americans.
Cavusoglu said Turkey’s Ankara-based government supports cooperation with the U.S., but that the Turkish judiciary is independent.
The U.S. delegation arrived in Ankara Monday for talks with Turkish officials from the ministries of foreign affairs, justice and the interior.
Associated Press writher Joseph Ataman in Istanbul contributed.