Turkish, US Diplomats Work to Ease Troubled Ties
Diplomats from the United States and Turkey are working to ease tensions after disputes led the countries to place visa restrictions on each other.
This past weekend, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made sharply critical remarks about the U.S. over a diplomatic dispute from the summer.
Erdogan was angry that the U.S. had given arrest orders for Turkish security officials in August.
He said, "If the United States issues arrest warrants for my 13 bodyguards in a country where I went upon invitation, I am sorry, but I will not say that country is civilized."
The warrants were given for officials who were accused of attacking peaceful protesters outside the Turkish embassy in Washington in May. The violence took place during Erdogan's visit to the U.S.
Arrests raise tensions further
Tensions increased earlier this month after Turkey arrested two men who were working for the U.S. diplomatic mission in Turkey.
As a result, the U.S. placed visa restrictions on Turkey.
One of those facing charges in Turkey is Metin Topuz. He is accused of links to the U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen. Turkey blames Gulen for last year's attempt by some members of the military to seize power.
Turkey answered the U.S. travel restrictions by placing visa restrictions of its own on U.S. travelers.
Talks about the restrictions took place Thursday. The U.S. State Department called the talks productive.
Semih Idiz is with the Al Monitor website. He says Erdogan often gives strong criticisms of western countries at unexpected times. However, he said the Turkish leader wants to keep good ties with the West as well.
"But, we must realize Erdogan was in New York very recently and had a very chummy meeting with Donald Trump who called him a special friend. So Turkey is aware, for all the problems it has with America, too, that it has to tread cautiously."
Observers note that Erdogan's criticisms are linked to Turkey's domestic politics. They say Erdogan is seeking to gain support for the 2019 presidential and general elections.
However, U.S. relations with Turkey could be hurt further by another court case involving a Turkish-Iranian businessman Reza Zarrab.
Zarrab is accused of being involved in secret trade with Iran, which was barred by U.S. law at the time. U.S. government lawyers say the businessman developed a plan involving billions of dollars that permitted Iran to avoid U.S. sanctions. They say a top Turkish state bank employee and a former minister are linked to the case.
The United States' support for Syrian Kurdish forces fighting Islamic State militants is another issue that angers Turkish leaders. They say the Syrian Kurdish fighters are linked to Kurdish separatists fighting Turkey.
I'm Mario Ritter.
1.arrest warrants 逮捕令
Courts have since issued five arrest warrants for Thaksin.
2.be accused of 指责
He was accused of stealing a small boy's bicycle
3.diplomatic dispute 外交争端
The issue nearly became a diplomatic dispute.
4.Visa restrictions 签证限制
Visa restrictions in these countries have largely been lifted.
5.The violence took place during Erdogan's visit to the U.S.
took place 发生；举行
Another dust-up took place in the teahouse.
We have incontrovertible evidence of what took place.
6.Zarrab is accused of being involved in secret trade with Iran, which was barred by U.S. law at the time.
at the time 那时
At the time we couldn't have anticipated the result of our campaigning.
I was just in grade school at the time, but I remember it perfectly.
上周末，土耳其总统雷杰普·塔伊普·埃尔多安（Recep Tayyip Erdogan）对夏季以来与美国的外交争端做出尖锐的评论 。
5月份，被指控在土耳其驻华盛顿大使馆外袭击和平抗议人群的土耳其官员遭到逮捕 。这场暴力事件发生时，埃尔多安正在访美 。
梅金·托普兹（Metin Topuz）是受到土耳其控告的人员之一 。他被指控与美国神职人员法士拉·葛兰（Fethullah Gulen）有瓜葛 。土耳其称，葛兰去年试图通过一些军人夺取政权 。
有关签证限制的会谈将在周四举行 。美国国务院称这次会谈“富有成效” 。
塞米·迪兹（Semih Idiz）是监察网站的观察员 。他指出，埃尔多安经常毫无预警地强烈指责西方国家 。不过，他还表示，土耳其领导人也希望与西方国家保持友善关系 。
“但是，我们必须要清楚，埃尔多安近日在纽约与特朗普举行亲密会面，特朗普还称他是一位特别的朋友 。因此，土耳其也意识到，虽然与美国的矛盾重重，但必须谨慎行事 。”
观察人士指出，埃尔多安的批评言论与土耳其的国内政治相关 。他们认为，埃尔多安正在争取获得2019年总统大选的支持 。
然而，土耳其裔伊朗商人扎拉卜（Reza Zarrab）的法庭案件可能会让两国关系雪上加霜 。
扎拉卜被控与伊朗进行秘密交易，而当时美国法律禁止与伊朗进行交易 。美国政府的律师指出，该商人制订出一项价值数十亿美元的计划以便伊朗逃避美国的制裁 。他们称，土耳其银行高级职员和前部长均参与此案件 。
美国支持叙利亚库尔德武装打击“伊斯兰国”激进分子是激怒土耳其领导的又一导火索 。他们指出，叙利亚库尔德武装分子同与对抗土耳其的库尔德分裂分子有关 。