US pastor faces terror charges in fraught trial in Turkey

US pastor faces terror charges in fraught trial in Turkey

US pastor faces terror charges in fraught trial in Turkey

He was arrested in October 2016 while running the Resurrection Church in the western city of Izmir.

The lawyer for a USA pastor who goes on trial in Turkey on Monday over alleged links to a group accused of orchestrating a failed military coup said the preacher had been arrested for his Christian faith.

Aliaga: An American pastor is going on trial in Turkey accused of ties to terror groups and spying, in a case that has strained ties between Turkey and the United States. Also in court were Sam Brownback, the US ambassador at large for religious freedoms, and US Senator Thom Tillis. Yours is not - he is living in Pennsylvania. The prosecution is seeking a jail sentence of up to 35 years.

The indictment says the charges are based on evidence obtained from Brunson's phone, as well as information from witnesses. Gulen has denied any link to the coup attempt in which more than 240 people were killed.

Turkey initially accused the pastor of being a member of both Mr Gulen's network and the PKK, but apparently adjusted the charges before the trial, accusing him of working on the groups' behalf.

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The American Center for Law and Justice, a conservative Christian group in the U.S., has called Brunson a "hostage of the Turkish government".

"I'm still waiting for my dad to walk me down the aisle, and I'm still waiting for that father-daughter dance", she said.

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