Christian supporters are working on a global campaign to release American Pastor Andrew Brunson, who was jailed in Turkey on false allegations.
Brunson led a congregation in Turkey for 23 years before he was detained in October and sent to prison earlier this month.
“As we approach Christmas—a season of hope and promise—we know that people around the world will stand with Pastor Andrew—will be Pastor Andrew’s voice—supporting his fight for freedom, and will join us in urging Turkey to release him immediately,” said Jay Sekulow, chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), now representing Brunson’s family.
More than 100,000 have signed the ACLJ petition asking for Brunson’s release.
Brunson was imprisoned for alleged ties to the Gülen movement, whose followers are blamed for attempting a coup on July 15.
Brunson was arrested with his wife, Norine, but she was released in October. She has not been able to visit or husband or received any replies to her letters.
Turkey has accused many pastors of being a “threat to national security.” According to Turkey’s Association for Protestant Churches, at least 100 pastors in Turkey have had to leave due to government refusal to renew their visas or permits.
In November, a ministry leader and doctoral student living in Turkey, who had been living in the country for decades, was deported and banned from Turkey for life.
Publication date: December 22, 2016
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.