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Pastor Brunson
Photo: World Watch Monitor

After many months' delay, it was recently announced that the trial for American pastor, Andrew Brunson, is to begin on April 16th. Pastor Brunson has been accused of being connected with a Muslim cleric living in exile in the U.S., Fethullah Gülen, as well as having links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party that's been working to establish an independent Kurdistan. The indictment stated that Pastor Brunson was allegedly involved in converting Kurds to Christianity and aiming to establish a Kurdish state for them.

Pastor Brunson was originally arrested in October 2016 and has been held without bail since. If convicted, he could face up to 35 years in prison. There have been suggestions from Turkish President Erdogan that he would be interested in trading the imprisoned pastor for Gülen, who was accused of leading a failed coup attempt in 2016. However, without evidence against Gülen, the U.S would not be prepared to send him to Turkey.

The Voice of the Martyrs has been actively following the plight of Pastor Brunson. For other reports on this situation, go to our Turkey country report.

Lift up Pastor Brunson and his family to the Lord during this critical juncture, as legal representatives prepare for the upcoming trial which is to commence on April 16th. Pray that the courts will seek justice and the truth will be revealed. Further, please pray for the continuing ministry outreach to the people of Turkey, especially those who need to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ.

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Country Information

Population
82,482,383 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Turkish (70-75), Kurdish (19), other minorities (7-12)

Religion (%)
Islam (99.8), other (0.2)

Leader
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2014)

Government type
Parliamentary republic

Legal system
Civil law system derived from various European continental legal systems

Sources: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Turkey

Prayerfully uphold those who have had their churches and places of worship taken over by a government that does not represent their beliefs, values or ordinances. Ask the Lord to oversee the mediation process as church officials and government representatives endeavour to work out a solution that is both honouring to Him and fair to all the members of the various churches. Despite the challenges experienced by the believers of this country, may they have a sense of God's reassuring presence and peace, knowing that one day He will reign supremely and justly over the entire earth.

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