"Pastor Andrew Brunson is an innocent man held in Turkey and justice demands that he be released. Turkey would do well not to test POTUS Trump’s resolve to see Americans who are wrongfully imprisoned in foreign lands returned home to the United States," Pence said via Twitter on Wednesday.
Last week, Trump announced a doubling of tariffs on imports of Turkish steel and aluminum in a tweet that contained an oblique reference to deteriorating relations between Washington and Ankara — a reference that was widely interpreted as further retaliation for Brunson’s detention. The announcement did not affect tariffs on other steel- and aluminum-suppliers to the United States.
White House spokesman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said yesterday that the steel and aluminum tariffs were specific to national security and not tied Brunson.
Earlier on Wednesday, Turkey rejected Washington’s latest appeal for the release of Brunson and imposed retaliatory duties on US products.