President Trump said Friday that he told his administration to double steel and aluminum tariffs against Turkey, reflecting the rapidly deteriorating state of relations between the two countries.
The announcement would mark a major policy shift, but it was made in a Twitter post with little context. Trump remarked that Turkey’s currency, the lira, was weakening against the U.S. dollar, a phenomenon that had made existing tariffs less effective.
Turkish Lira plunges 15% against dollar as Trump ordered to double tariffs on steel and aluminium exports Turkey, both are the NATO members countries
Doubling the tariffs to 20 percent for aluminum and 50 percent for steel would magnify the impact of the trade restrictions.
Both countries are members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, which could end up pulling other nations into the diplomatic skirmish. And the U.S. Air Force has used Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey for years, even though a number of people in Turkey have pressed to have the U.S. forces expelled.
The Treasury Department slapped sanctions on two Turkish officials last week because the country refused to release American pastor Andrew Brunson, who faces charges in Turkey that include attempting to overthrow the government and espionage.