United States and Turkey resume processing some visas after spat

US embassy in Turkey starts to issue visas

US Embassy In Turkey Partially Lifts Visa Sanctions

The United States has resumed processing visas at its missions in Turkey on a "limited basis", the embassy announced in an email on Monday.

The Turkish Embassy in Washington tweeted soon after the American statement was released that the Turkish government would begin to process visa applications of United States citizens on a "limited basis" as well.

Turkey and the United State mutually suspended all non-immigrant visa services on October 8, after Turkey's arrest of a U.S. consulate employee. Turkey retaliated by halting visa services in the US for Americans who want to travel to Turkey. A Turkish court arrested him on charges of having links with the organization of the opposition Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen (FETO).

"Recent events have forced the Turkish Government to reassess the commitment of the Government of the USA to the security of the Turkish Mission facilities and personnel", the Turkish embassy in Washington, DC, said at the time.

A USA embassy statement said it had received "high-level assurances" from Turkey that no additional local employees were under investigation.

It said it also received "initial assurances" from Ankara that its local staff would not be detained or arrested for performing their jobs.

Turkey blames Gulen, a US-based Muslim cleric, for orchestrating last year's failed coup attempt.

The U.S. embassy said it continues to "have serious concerns about the existing cases against arrested local employees" as well as the cases of other arrested U.S. citizens.

The lack of movement on the issue has further strained ties already frayed over Washington's support for a Syrian Kurdish militia that Ankara considers a terror group. Turkey regards the YPG as an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

Ankara is also angry over the arrest in the USA of Mehmet Hakan Atilla, deputy chief executive at state lender Halkbank, and the Iranian-Turkish businessman Reza Zarrab.

Their trial is scheduled to start on November 27.

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