Wednesday, December 12, 2018
News

Turkey frees US pastor from house arrest (Lead)

   SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend    Print this Page   COMMENT

Ankara | Friday, 2018 8:15:05 PM IST
A Turkish court on Friday freed American pastor Andrew Brunson from house arrest two years after he was detained on accusations of helping plot a coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The court on Friday sentenced Brunson to three years and one month in prison, but chose to release him based on his time already served. Prosecutors were seeking a 10-year jail term, CNN reported.

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

The court's decision came a day after report said that US officials believed they were on the verge of securing Brunson's release.

"My thoughts and prayers are with Pastor Brunson and we hope to have him safely back home soon!" US President Donald Trump tweeted after the verdict.

The 50-year-old pastor, who has been living in Turkey for more than two decades, was detained two years ago over espionage charges and links to a network led by the US-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

Gulen is accused of masterminding a coup bid in Turkey in July 2016, in which 250 people were killed, while the PKK was outlawed for its armed struggle against the Turkish state.

The case has been at the centre of deteriorating ties between Washington and Ankara, heightened by Trump's defence of Brunson as his administration elevated religious freedom as a cause.

In August, Trump said that Turkey had "not acted as a friend" and "they made up phoney charges that he's a spy. He's not a spy".

Trump slapped Turkey, a NATO ally, with sanctions in August, targeting the country's justice and interior ministers.

US Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin said at the time that the US was prepared to add more sanctions if Brunson wasn't released.

--IANS soni/

( 307 Words)

2018-10-12-19:54:07 (IANS)

 
  LATEST COMMENTS (0)
POST YOUR COMMENT
Comments Not Available
 
POST YOUR COMMENT
 
 
TRENDING TOPICS
 
 
CITY NEWS
MORE CITIES
 
 
 
MORE WORLD NEWS
Ecuador court to hear appeals of Julian ...
More coral species found in deeper regio...
French Interior Minister strengthens ant...
Mexico estimates 1,100 migrants crossed ...
US successfully tests missile defence sy...
Bomb threat in Facebook campus, Building...
More...
 
INDIA WORLD ASIA
Bulandshahr violence: Another cop transf...
I'm not running away from country: Vadra...
Congress largest party in MP, Rajasthan;...
BSP to support Congress in MP, Rajasthan...
BSP to support Congress in MP (Lead)...
Congress pips BJP in Chhattisgarh, Rajas...
More...    
 
 Top Stories
'Cheat India' trailer: A hard-hitti... 
Akhilesh Yadav pledges support to C... 
Health of mothers, children will de... 
Scott Derrickson to return for 'Doc... 
Here's the first look at 'Charlie's... 
Congress says it has the numbers, s... 
Internet therapy apps may reduce de... 
Yogi Adityanath arrives in Nepal to...