• Global geopolitical series: pakistan’s new PM stands by turkey’s Erdogan in diplomatic feud with U.S.

    Source: FxWire Pro - Commentary / 21 Aug 2018 09:17:12   America/New_York

    Birds of the same feather flock together.

    Pakistan’s new Prime Minister Imran Khan stands by Turkish President Recep Tayipp Erdogan who is in a middle of a bitter diplomatic feud with the U.S. President Donald Trump, which has created a havoc for the Turkish economy, stock market and exchange rate. At the heart of the current feud lies an American Pastor, who has been accused by Turkey as one of the indirect participants in the Turkish military coup of 2016. The Pastor has spent two years in prison before he was moved to house arrest earlier this year. The Trump administration has imposed sanctions on senior Turkish officials and doubled steel and metal tariffs on Turkey, demanding the release of the Pastor. As Erdogan has refused to back down, the economy and the exchange rate has suffered. Turkey’s benchmark stock index is down almost 22 percent this year, while Turkish Lira is down more than 61 percent. The economy has suffered too. The unemployment rate is hovering close to 10 percent, while central bank interest rate is almost at 18 percent amid high inflation of 16 percent.

    Pakistan’s newly elected Prime Minister Imran Khan, who has been the world cup winning captain of Pakistan cricket team and has been critical of U.S. foreign policy towards Pakistan throughout his political careers has lent words of support to Mr. Erdogan in a tweet, “On behalf of the people of Pakistan & myself, I want to let President Erdogan & the people of Turkey know we are praying for their success in dealing with the severe economic challenges confronting them, as they have always succeeded against adversities in their glorious history.”

    It is not surprising that Pakistan would be siding with Turkey in the feud at a time, when the Trump administration has taken the toughest of stance against Pakistan over its alleged terrorist activity and blocked $2 billion worth of aid to Pakistan and has also demanded that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) does not lend money to Pakistan as it is likely to be used to repay Chinese loans to Pakistan.

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