Spokesperson for the White House Sarah Sanders has declared that the US will impose sanctions against Minister of Interior and Minister of Justice of Turkey in the wake of Pastor Andrew Craig Brunson not being released.
Gül and Soylu were mentioned in the sanctions due to their roles in the arrest of Brunson. The two ministers were included within the scope of financial sanctions.
Expression in the decision is:
“These officials serve as leaders of governmental institutions that are responsible for practicing serious human rights violations in Turkey”.
Which sanctions will be imposed?
The sanctions involve blocking of two ministers’ assets in anywhere under US jurisdiction authority; blocking of acquiring new assets; US citizens doing financial activity with the two ministers.
Secretary of Treasury issued a written statement
Sanders emphasized that Gül and Soylu played the pivotal role in capturing and arrest of Pastor Brunson in 2016.
In a written statement issued by US Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin, it was stressed that Brunson’s unfair arrest and him pending for trial in house arrest is unacceptable.
Protestant Diriliş (Resurrection) Church Pastor Andrew Craig Brunson was arrested on December 9, 2016. Charges pressed against him are “Committing crime on behalf of Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) as a non-member” and “espionage”. The charge was pressed based on statements of an anonymous witness codenamed “Dua” (Prayer).
Brunson’s detention was converted to house arrest on August 25.
On July 31, the demand that the house arrest and international travel ban be lifted was rejected.
Trump also mentioned “sanctions”
Concerning the detainment of Pastor Brunson, US President Donald Trump declared that sanctions will be imposed on Turkey.
The US President wrote on Twitter:
The United States will impose large sanctions on Turkey for their long time detainment of Pastor Andrew Brunson, a great Christian, family man and wonderful human being. He is suffering greatly.
“This innocent man of faith should be released immediately!”
“Financial limitation” bill on Turkey
The US Senate passed the bill that limits Turkey getting loan from international financial institutions until “Turkey end unjust detention of US citizens” last week.
On previous day, US Senate and the House of Representatives temporarily stopped delivery of F-35 jets to Turkey despite US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis’ objection.
"You have a priest, too"
Turkey learned the arrest of Brunson during the meeting of the President and Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and US President Donald Trump on July 17, 2017. At the meeting, Trump demanded that the Pastor Brunson be released from prison.
As for President Erdoğan, he proposed the exchange of US-based cleric Fethullah Gülen, the head of Gülen Community, which is charged with plotting the coup attempt on Jul 15, 2016, with Brunson.
"The US wants extradition of a priest from us. You have a priest too. You hand him over us as well", Erdoğan said. (HK/TK)
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