TRIAL OF PAS­TOR HIGH­LIGHTS STRAINED U.S.-TURK­ISH AL­LIANCE

The Day - - WORLD & NATION -

Is­tan­bul — An Amer­i­can pas­tor fac­ing decades in prison on ter­ror­ism-re­lated charges in Tur­key is sched­uled to ap­pear in court for the first time to­day, in a case that could test the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion’s abil­ity to sway its in­creas­ingly es­tranged Turk­ish al­lies. The pas­tor, An­drew Brun­son, was de­tained in Oc­to­ber 2016 dur­ing a large-scale wave of ar­rests by the au­thor­i­ties af­ter a failed coup at­tempt in Tur­key. A for­mal in­dict­ment — pre­sented a year and a half af­ter Brun­son’s ar­rest — ac­cused him of as­so­ci­at­ing with the coup plot­ters and other of­fenses, based on ev­i­dence that his lawyer, his ad­vo­cates and U.S. of­fi­cials have dis­missed as ground­less.

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