Turkey receives USA request to solve visa crisis: spokesman

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Turkish and USA officials chose to meet to work on resolving a diplomatic crisis between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies and talks between the two countries' foreign ministers were constructive, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said on Thursday.

Ambassador John Bass told reporters the embassy hasn't received evidence supporting the allegations.

During the conversation, Tillerson said Turkey needed to present evidence for the accusations against the consulate employee, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said. "I can't prefigure the outcome because its going to depend on those ongoing private conversations and I wont comment on private diplomatic conversations between my minister and his counterparts".

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Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his US counterpart Rex Tillerson discussed the issue over the phone on Wednesday, marking the first contact between Ankara and Washington since the two sides announced a suspension of all non-immigrant visa applications for each other's citizens on Sunday. Erdogan had been encouraging the impression that Bass acted without approval from Washington, a view that gained traction after several days of silence from the State Department and White House.

"Talks between the foreign minister and (US Secretary of State) Tillerson were very constructive".

The strained relations between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies escalated last week after Turkey arrested a Turkish employee of the U.S. consulate on suspicion of links to US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is accused by Ankara of being behind a failed coup attempt in July 2016.

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On Monday, Istanbul prosecutors summoned another Turkish national working for the US consulate to testify.

Erdogan warned that Turkish-U.S. ties could be further damaged if U.S. President Donald Trump's administration played a role in the visa decision.

Ties between the two countries are tense over Gulen, who is wanted in Turkey but who denies allegations of plotting the failed coup. Because this is the position they are holding.

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"We have seen nothing to date which suggests that any of the charges against him had any merit", Bass said of Brunson.

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