Trump’s corrupt dealings with Erdoğan are startling, WaPo columnist says
U.S. President Donald Trump's dealings with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, including when Trump offered to intervene in a federal investigation into Halkbank, are some of the most shocking allegations in a new book by a former national security adviser, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius said on Wednesday.
John Bolton's memoir about his tenure as Trump's national security adviser, details the U.S. president's wrongdoings and shady relations.
"The Turkey story — featuring the American president assuring Erdoğan he would 'take care of things' in an ongoing federal criminal investigation — may be the clearest, most continuous narrative of misconduct by Trump that has yet surfaced," Ignatius said.
Turkey’s state-owned Halkbank is accused of laundering up to $20 billion on behalf of Iranian entities to help them break U.S.-imposed sanctions, bank fraud charges, and concealing the nature of these illicit transactions from U.S. officials.
In his new book, Bolton said that Trump once promised Erdoğan, with whom the U.S. president is known to have warm relations, that he would oust prosecutors who were investigating Halkbank.
U.S. federal chief prosecutor Geoffrey Berman, who oversaw a court case against the bank, stepped down over the weekend, after initially refusing to leave his post when U.S. Attorney General William Barr told him that he had been fired by Trump.
But the Halkbank case continues despite Trump’s firing of Berman, Ignatius said.
"The Halkbank case continues — Trump’s assurances to the Turkish president notwithstanding."