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US and Turkey Resmue issuing visas

The United States embassy in Turkey has stated that it will begin issuing non-immigrant visas for Turkish citizens, albeit on a limited basis.

In response, the Turkish embassy in Washington said it would also resume processing visa applications for US citizens.

This development marks a significant improvement between the two countries after what has been a testing month. This will come as good news for Turkish and US citizens wishing to travel between the countries.

The US had suspended all non-immigrant visa services after the Turkish authorities arrested a US consulate employee. The worker was suspected of being linked to a failed coup in Turkey last year.

In addition, Turkey has been unsuccessfully trying to extradite the Fethullah Gulen, a US-based cleric, over his supposed role in the attempted coup. The cleric denies the charge of instigating the unrest.

Improved relations on eve of PM's visit


However, on Monday the US mission to Turkey announced: "We believe the security posture has improved sufficiently to allow for the resumption of limited visa services in Turkey."

The US Department of State added: “We have also received initial assurances from the government of Turkey that local staff of our embassy and consulates will not be detained or arrested for performing their official duties.”

The move comes on the eve of Banali Yildrim's (the Turkish Prime Minister) 5-day visit to the US when the visa issue, as well as the extradition of Fethullah Gulen, will be discussed.

Timothy Ash, a sovereign strategist at Bluebay Asset Management, said in a note: "With Prime Minister Yildirim’s visit to the US we are likely to see some easing and improvement in the relationship with the US - already seen with a limited lifting in US visa restrictions.”

He added: "Unless there is a sea change in the tone of the relationship, unlikely, the core problems remain and are not being adequately addressed.”