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Turkey, US to meet to resolve visa row: deputy PM

Turkey, US to meet to resolve visa row: deputy PM

Turkish and USA officials chose to meet to work on resolving a diplomatic crisis between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies and talks between the two countries' foreign ministers were constructive, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said on Thursday.

"Outgoing U.S. Ambassador John Bass announced the visa suspension and issued a video Monday discussing his decision, but there has yet to be any official comment from Washington".

"It's a shame if the U.S.is governed by an ambassador in Ankara", he added.

The dispute was triggered by the arrest of local U.S staff in Turkey, prompting the United States on Sunday to suspend non-immigrant visa services there.

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Erdoğan slammed the U.S.' stance on Turkey, and reiterated his criticism of USA support for the PKK terrorist group's Syrian wing the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed branch the People's Protection Units (YPG). Tillerson expressed his "profound concern" about the arrests, the US State Department said in a statement.

"We maintain a very close collaboration, very close communication, the military-to-military interaction and integration has not been affected by this", Mattis told reporters as he traveled to a military headquarters in Florida.

On Tuesday, a Pentagon spokesman said the spat had not affected North Atlantic Treaty Organisation or USA military ties with Turkey. Turkey retaliated by halting visas services in the United States.

The spat between the two countries was ignited by the recent arrest of Metin Topuz, a Turkish employee at the USA consulate in Istanbul, over suspected link to the US -based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is accused by Ankara of being behind a failed coup attempt in July 2016.