President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has invited his citizens to “ignore campaigns against Turkey,” saying “they may have their dollars, but we have our people and God.”
Erdoğan addressed locals during his first trip to his hometown in the Black Sea province of Rize following the June 24 elections late Aug. 9.
“We will work a lot and we will try to make our country more modern with all of its 81 provinces, God willing. Just know that we are better than yesterday now, and tomorrow we will be better than today. Don’t worry,” Erdoğan said.
As the Turkish currency lost more than 30 percent value against the greenback since the end of last year, Erdoğan said: “There are various campaigns. Don’t care about them. And don’t forget that if they have their dollars, we have our people and our God ... I want your patience and ardor.”
The USD/TRY exchange rate rose as high as 6.41 early Aug. 10 before easing to 5.86. It was 5.46 as of 5 p.m. local time on Aug. 9.
Concern over uncertainties about whether a meeting between Turkey and the U.S. could heal their wide diplomatic rift weighed on the Turkish currency.
Turkish officials held meetings on Aug. 8 with the State Department’s No. 2 official, John Sullivan, following a move by the U.S. to hit two senior Turkish government ministers with sanctions over the detention of American pastor Andrew Brunson.
The two sides announced that the talks will continue.
“Much of this though, we’re not going to negotiate in public,” U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a press conference on Aug. 9. “I would say we would define progress as Pastor Brunson being brought home.”
In his speech on Aug. 9, Erdoğan also vowed to help the Black Sea provinces which were hit by flash floods this week, killing one person and damaging dozens of buildings.
“God willing, we will remove all the suffering because this state and this nation are strong,” he said.