Pompeo Renews Calls for the Return of American Pastor Imprisoned in Turkey

Pompeo Renews Calls for the Return of American Pastor Imprisoned in Turkey

Pompeo Renews Calls for the Return of American Pastor Imprisoned in Turkey

"Of course you can't expect all issues to be resolved in a single meeting", he said.

US President Donald Trump and his Vice President Mike Pence had threatened Turkey with "large sanctions" last week if Brunson was not immediately released.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu have held talks in Singapore on August 3, 2018.

Before his move home last week, Brunson, who led a Protestant church in the Aegean city of Izmir, had spent almost two years in jail.

Following the meeting, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said that Pompeo "had a constructive conversation" with Cavusoglu and they " agreed to continue to try to resolve the issues between our two countries".

"Everyone's very disappointed. Nobody expected this kind of treatment (toward) two Cabinet ministers", said Ilnur Cevik, a senior adviser to Turkish strongman President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Pompeo said the administration's actions on Wednesday - imposing sanctions on Turkey's justice and interior ministers - were a sign of how seriously the U.S.is treating Brunson's case.

"They've been holding these folks for a long time".

"I hope they'll see this for what it is: a demonstration that we're very serious", he said. "These are innocent people". Turkey has said the sanctions are unacceptable.

Under the sanctions to be imposed by the Treasury Department, any property, or interest in property, belonging to Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul or Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu within USA jurisdiction would be blocked.

In a statement announcing the sanctions, the US Department of the Treasury said Gul and Soylu are the leaders of organisations that have engaged in "serious human rights abuse". But Turkish officials have rubbished the claims.

In terms of North Korea, Pompeo criticized the communist state for lagging behind on plans to honor the agreements made in Singapore during a summit in June between Kim Jong Un and President Trump.

He is accused of carrying out activities on behalf of two groups viewed by Ankara as terrorists: the movement of the US-led Muslim preacher Fethullah Gulen blamed for the July 2016 coup attempt and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

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