Saturday, August 18News That Matters

U.S. says hopes spat with NATO ally Turkey over pastor resolved ‘in coming days’

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Saturday that the United States has every intention of working cooperatively with NATO ally Turkey and that he hoped the issue of Americans detained there could be resolved “in coming days”.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a news conference at the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore August 4, 2018. REUTERS/Edgar Su

Asked if the issue threatened Turkey’s membership of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Pompeo said: “Turkey is a NATO partner with whom the United States has every intention to continue to work with cooperatively.”

Pompeo said he hoped the issue of the pastor, and other Americans detained in Turkey, would be resolved “in the coming days”.

Pompeo and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu met on Friday and agreed to try to resolve a series of disputes. Their meeting in Singapore followed Washington’s imposition on Wednesday of sanctions on two Turkish ministers over the case of Andrew Brunson, a U.S. pastor on trial in Turkey for backing terrorism.

Reporting by David Brunnstrom and Jack Kim; Writing by John Geddie; Editing by Nick Macfie

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