‘If they have dollar, we have our Allah’: Erdogan

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Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday accused the USA of exchanging its "strategic North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally with a pastor", remarks that questioned why Washington was seeking to free its citizens detained by Ankara, including Pastor Andrew Brunson who has become the eye of a diplomatic storm between the two nations.

The warning comes after the Turkish lira fell by an astounding 20 per cent on Friday.

Stocks in the USA and Europe skidded Friday as investors anxious about the financial stability of Turkey and how it might affect the global banking system. The Nasdaq composite was down more than 0.8 percent as technology stocks also dropped.

Relations between the two countries deteriorated in the wake of US President Donald Trump's decision to increase tariffs on Turkish aluminum and steel to 20% and 50% respectively.

US manufacturers that import steel from Turkey have been benefiting from the rising value of the dollar against the Turkish lira, which climbed to a fresh all-time high Friday.

"Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!" hewrote".

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Erdogan promised supporters that Turkey was taking the necessary precautions to protect its economy but added "the most important thing is breaking the hands firing these weapons". Financial upheaval risks further destabilising an already volatile region.

Washington slapped sanctions on Turkey's interior and justice ministers this week, angering Ankara which responded with the tit-for-tat move, with Turkey saying they will freeze the assets of the U.S. "justice and interior ministers" last week.

The US is the biggest destination for Turkish steel exports, at 11% of the Turkish export volume. But this seems less likely as Erdogan and his mouthpieces in the media cast the United States' moves as some kind of epic battle to wreck Turkey, and Trump just gave them fresh ammunition.

Jackson said the weakness of the lira would boost competitiveness for Turkey's exports, but the tariffs on steel and aluminum would offset that.

"Do not worry!" He said Turkey was not afraid of "threats" and added Turkey had "alternatives" for economic cooperation in many places "from Iran, to Russian Federation, to China and some European countries".

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Rize spoke of Turkey's plans to trade in local currencies with some countries.

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The U.S. sanctions come after Turkey arrested an American pastor and put him on trial for espionage and terror-related charges.

On Friday, before Trump's tweet, Erdogan had tried to stem the sell-off by appealing to Turkish citizens to exchange any dollars, euros or gold for lira to help the currency.

Meanwhile, Ankara is wanting the extradition of Fethullah Gulen, a Pennsylvania-based cleric who is blamed by Mr Erdogan for masterminding the 2016 coup.

In a New York Times article on Saturday, Mr Erdogan warned that Turkey would be forced to seek new friends.

After nearly 20 months in a Turkish jail, Brunson was moved to house arrest in July by a court. He offered no further details.

Erdogan enjoys the support of many Turks even though rents and food and fuel prices have all surged.

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