Turkish citizens traveling to USA 'face risk of arbitrary arrest' - Ankara


Turkish citizens traveling to USA 'face risk of arbitrary arrest' - Ankara

"We are seeing a growing number of terrorist acts and acts of violence in the United States", the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement while warning of the risk of "arbitrary arrests" in the United States.

Relations between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies have become increasingly strained over a number of issues, including Turkey's detention of two Turkish employees of U.S. diplomatic missions in the country.

"Turkish citizens traveling to the United States may be subjected to arbitrary detentions based on testimonies of unrespected sources", the ministry said in a statement dated Thursday.

The U.S. has recently experienced attacks in Ohio University, Forth Lauderdale-Hollywood Airport, Minnesota's Dar Al-Farooq Mosque and a Texas church, as well as cars ploughing into people in Charlottesville and NY.

The move comes after the USA on January 11 urged its citizens to reconsider travel to Turkey "due to terrorism and arbitrary detentions".

Speaking to reporters after Friday prayers, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said the reciprocal travel warnings did not help the strained ties between Ankara and Washington. Stressing that "terror knows to borders", he added that Ankara and Istanbul were as safe as Washington and NY. The relations between the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies United States of America and Turkey are now very tense. The conviction of Turkish banker Mehmet Hakan Atilla over the violation of US -imposed sanctions against Iran in what Ankara sees as a "politically motivated" case caused the latest spat between the two countries. Ankara has said it was based on false evidence and supported by the network of Fethullah Gulen, a US -based Turkish cleric Ankara blames for orchestrating a failed coup in Turkey in 2016.

"Terrorist groups continue to plot possible attacks in Turkey".