Turkish court rules to release US pastor Brunson
Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 12
A Turkish court ruled on Friday to release the US evangelical Christian pastor Andrew Brunson at the center of a bitter diplomatic row between Ankara and Washington, a move that could be the first step toward mending ties between the NATO allies, Reuters reports.
The court passed a 3 years and 1-1/2 month sentence on Brunson, who had been charged with terrorism offences, but said he would not serve any further time because he had already been detained since October 2016.
Brunson was charged with links to Kurdish militants and supporters of Fethullah Gulen, the cleric blamed by Turkey for a failed coup attempt in 2016.
Brunson denied the accusation and Washington had demanded his immediate release.