ISTANBOL: Turkey and the United States of America are NATO partners. Turkey has a flourishing tourism industry and is considered as one of the best tourism destinations in the world.
In a surprising move, this weekend tourism just died between the US and Turkey when both countries stopped issuing tourist visas to their citizens.
Turkey on Sunday suspended non-immigrant visa services at all Turkish diplomatic facilities in the United States, in a tit-for-tat move amid escalating tensions between the NATO allies.
Just hours after the US mission to Turkey announced it was restricting visa services, saying that recent events had forced it to “reassess” Ankara’s commitment to the security of US facilities and staff, the Turkish embassy in Washington, DC, hit back with an almost identical statement.
It’s not clear if VISA on arrival at Istanbul airport usually available for Americans are still issued.
Turkey urged the United States on Monday to review its suspension of visa services after the arrest of a U.S. consulate employee sharply escalated tensions between the two NATO allies and drove Turkey’s currency and stocks lower.
Last week’s arrest of a Turkish employee of the U.S. consulate in Istanbul marked a fresh low. Turkey said the employee had links to U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed by Ankara for a failed military coup in July 2016.