Turkey is a 'target of economic war', says Erdogan

The lira went into free-fall sinking more than 10 percent

The lira has always been falling on worries about Mr Erdogan's influence over monetary policy and worsening relations with the United States.

Turkey's currency crisis has lurched on to the global stage, denting European and United States stocks as fears of contagion rise. "The entire Turkish public is against United States policies that disregard Turkey's legitimate security demands", Kalin, also a spokesperson for Erdogan, wrote for the pro-government Daily Sabah newspaper.

Trump's tweet caused a further drop in the Turkish currency, which is now down 13 percent on the day.

US President Donald Trump on Friday said he has authorized to double the tariffs on steel and aluminum products from Turkey to 50 per cent and 20 per cent, respectively. What possible reason could there be behind the lira which was at 2.8 against dollar in July 15, 2016 to slide below 6 yesterday?

"Before it is too late, Washington must give up the misguided notion that our relationship can be asymmetrical and come to terms with the fact that Turkey has alternatives".

An important emerging market, Turkey borders Iran, Iraq and Syria and has been mostly pro-Western for decades. Financial upheaval there risks further destabilizing an already volatile region.

In an opinion piece in the New York Times Friday, Erdogan wrote "failure to reverse this trend of unilateralism and disrespect will require us to start looking for new friends and allies".

U.S. President Donald Trump intensified his spat with Turkey on Friday by imposing higher tariffs on metal imports, putting unprecedented economic pressure on a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally and deepening turmoil in Turkish financial markets.

Turkey and the USA are now experiencing rocky relations following Washington's imposition of sanctions on Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu and Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul for not releasing American Pastor Andrew Brunson, who faces terrorism charges in Turkey.

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The Ministry issued a statement asserting that Turkey, as it determines and implements its own trade policy in compliance with the WTO, expects other member countries to comply with global rules. Shame on you, shame on you. He urged Turkish citizens to immediately exchange their gold and dollars for lira. On Friday, he said the country had to take steps in answer "to those who have waged an economic war against us".

Brunson denies both charges and his supporters argue that these accusations were fabricated by the Turkish government.

"This treatment by America of its strategic partner has annoyed us, it has upset us", Mr Erdogan said.

Erdogan reportedly was defiant, telling worshipers after Friday prayers that Turkey "will not lose the economic war".

Higher tariffs "could raise some of the costs for the USA, or rather offset some of the falling prices that they [US manufacturers] enjoyed", he added.

Relations between the U.S. and Turkey have not been helped by Turkey jailing an American citizen for an alleged attempted coup in 2016.

In Rize, Erdogan said the United States would pay a price by challenging Turkey for the sake of "petty calculations", denouncing Washington for declaring "economic war on the entire world" and holding countries "for ransom through sanction threats". "Because this is the language they understand", he said.

The Turks have also restricted American use of the Incirlik Air Base.

"The US has to rehabilitate its addiction to sanctions [and] bullying or entire world will unite - beyond verbal condemnations - to force it to".

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