Published On: Fri, Oct 12th, 2018

Pastor Andrew Brunson free from Turkish prison

Along with thousands of Christians and other faith-based groups, the Save the Persecuted Christians (STPC) Coalition is celebrating the release of imprisoned North Carolina pastor Andrew Brunson from his two-year detention in Turkey. Brunson, who had been detained by the government of Turkey since the fall of 2016 on false accusations of “spying” and “aiding terror groups,” was moved to house arrest in July and fully released by a Turkish court at a hearing today.

“This has been a long road of persecution for Pastor Andrew Brunson,” said founding Coalition member and Save the Persecuted Christians Director Dede Laugesen. “We are joyful and so thankful for Pastor Brunson’s long-awaited freedom. We praise God for this wonderful turn of events and thank the many people who worked on his behalf, including high-ranking officials within the Trump administration and influential and committed attorneys. Despite the joy we feel today, we must never forget there are millions of Christians who are not free to believe in Christ. Many remain jailed, persecuted in their own communities or even shunned in their own homes. We pray all will someday experience the freedom Andrew Brunson is savoring today.”

Pastor Andrew Brunson

USCIRF’s Commissioner Tony Perkins, who attended the October 12 hearing, said,“Today’s decision by the Turkish government is good news. We celebrate along with the millions of Americans who have been praying for Pastor Brunson’s release.”

Commissioner Perkins also said, “President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Secretary Pompeo are to be commended for their resolve, not only in defending Pastor Brunson but in defending the fundamental freedom of all people in all places. Additionally, there were many others advocating for Andrew, including USCIRF Vice Chair Kristina Arriaga and former Vice Chair Sandra Jolley.

“While we are relieved by today’s decision on Pastor Brunson’s unjust detention, we remain concerned for the Turkish people because numerous religious communities, such as the Greek Orthodox community and the Alevis, continue to face discrimination and restrictions on registration and ownership of property. Turkey must continue to work to treat all of its citizens equally and with respect for their religious freedom.”

Brunson was arrested over alleged links to political groups.

The court convicted him of terror charges and sentenced him to jail but he will not serve time.

He denied charges of espionage, which could have led to a 35-year jail term.

The authorities accuse him of having links with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Gulenist movement, which Turkey blames for the 2016 failed coup.


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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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