Pakistan on Monday came out in support of Turkey, which is embroiled in an intense dispute with the United States that has seen the lira tumble, saying the solution to all bilateral issues lies in "dialogue, mutual understanding and goodwill".

"Pakistan, in principle, is opposed to [the] imposition of unilateral sanctions against any country," a statement issued by Foreign Office (FO) spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal said, in an apparent reference to the sanctions imposed on Turkey by Washington.

The spokesman said actions other than dialogue "only undermine the peace and stability and make the solution to a problem more difficult and intractable".

Editorial: Why take sides?

Terming Turkey a "vital member and engine of the global economy", the FO spokesman said Pakistan greatly appreciates Ankara's role towards regional and international peace and stability.

"The people and the Government of Pakistan reiterate their strong support for the Government and the people of Turkey in their quest for peace and prosperity," the statement said, adding that Islamabad will continue to stand by the Turkish people "as always".

The US slapped sanctions on two Turkish officials earlier this month over a detained American pastor who is being tried on espionage and terror-related charges.

Turkey vowed retaliation “without delay” and warned the move would further harm relations between the two allies.

Last Friday, President Donald Trump said he has authorised the doubling of steel and aluminium tariffs “with respect to Turkey”.

Trump said via a tweet that the tariff on aluminium imports will be increased to 20 per cent and the tariff on steel imports will be raised to 50pc as the Turkish Lira “slides rapidly downward against our very strong Dollar!”

Trump also declared that, “Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!”

Meanwhile, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said the crash of the Turkish lira was a “political plot” against Turkey and warned Ankara would now seek new markets and partners.

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