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In what can only be described as the nonsensical rantings of an ideologue who refuses to even fathom the geopolitical Trump changes around him, Turkish President Recep Erdogan writes an op-ed in the New York Times to tell Americans POTUS Trump, and like-minded allies, are bullying/destroying the Turkish economy because his authoritarian regime has imprisoned an American pastor.
This is not difficult to figure out. Release American pastor Andrew Brunson, and President Trump will consider stopping. Keep the U.S. citizen detained and President Trump will continue destroying the Turkish economy. This is not hard to figure out once you accept the United States is unapologetically going to target any nation that targets American citizens.
SAKRAN, Turkey — A Turkish court on Friday ordered the release of the American pastor Andrew Brunson from house arrest, a move that will end his 24-month imprisonment and allow him to fly home, signaling a truce of sorts in a heated diplomatic dispute between Turkey and the United States.
Mr. Brunson was sentenced to three years, one month and 15 days in prison. But the judge lifted all judicial controls — including a ban on travel — because of a reduction for good behavior and in view of time served, making him free to leave the country immediately.
He left the courthouse by car shortly after the decision was announced, and American officials following the case said he would return home to Izmir before departing for the United States on Saturday morning.
The Trump administration had pressed hard for the release of Mr. Brunson, an evangelical pastor who runs the small Resurrection Church in Izmir. He was one of two dozen Americans detained in the aftermath of a failed coup in 2016 and was charged with aiding terrorist groups and espionage, charges he denies.
Mr. Brunson’s prolonged detention and trial significantly raised tensions between the United States and Turkey, with President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence personally raising his case several times with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, the United States imposing financial sanctions, and members of Congress traveling to Turkey to attend his trial.