Turkey's battered lira weakened more than 6 percent against the dollar on Friday, Aug. 17, after a US warning that Ankara should expect more economic sanctions unless it hands over the detained American evangelical pastor Andrew Brunson.
The Turkish lira was slightly lower on Friday after the United States warned Ankara should expect more sanctions over the detention of an American evangelical pastor.
Turkey has been hit by a currency crisis fuelled by a heated row with the United States.
The embattled currency, which has fallen by 40% this year amid a lack of interest rate hikes to control inflation, fell to around 5.86 to the dollar - continuing its recovery from a record low of 7.23 on Sunday.
We've put sanctions on several of the cabinet members. It's not clear how much more they'd be willing to contribute if the U.S. just keeps making things worse.
During a Cabinet meeting Thursday, Trump had harsh words for the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally saying, "They have not proven to be a good friend". Referring to imprisoned pastor Andrew Brunson, Trump said "they have a great Christian pastor there, he's a very innocent man".
Whatever action the United States does take, economists said it looked likely to cause more pain for Turkish assets in the immediate future.
The influential Protestant evangelical church in the U.S. is a major support base for Mr Trump. The row is likely to escalate in the coming days after a court in the Turkish city of Izmir made a decision to reject an appeal for release by Mr Brunson.
"They can't take our people", the president said, calling Brunson a "wonderful Christian pastor". Turkey and Qatar - which is also a very close U.S. ally - have become close economic and political partners in recent times. Brunson's lawyer said he would appeal again in 15 days.
Mr Erdogan is angry that the U.S. has not taken more action against the Gulenist movement and what he said was a failure "to unequivocally condemn" the 2016 coup attempt.
On Wednesday, Qatar announced that it would provide Turkey with "a host of economic projects, investments and deposits" worth a collective of $15 billion in a bid to support Turkey's economy.
If he's not released, Pastor Brunson's next hearing is scheduled for October 12.
Qatari and Turkish officials made the announcement yesterday afternoon after the emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, met in Ankara with Turkey's strongman, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, over a possible financial package as Turkey struggles with its worst financial crisis in years.
If convicted, the American pastor faces up to 35 years in jail.