Pastor Brunson’s lawyer says he’ll appeal Turkey’s decision

The lawyer of US pastor Andrew Brunson has revealed he plans to appeal Turkey’s constitutional court’s decision to reject his release.

Brunson has been detained in Turkey since October 2016, accused of trying to overthrow the Turkish government. He denies all charges and is currently under house arrest.

However, the pastor has now become somewhat of a political pawn in international relations – being seen as a bargaining chip between America and Turkey amidst retaliatory tariffs and sanctions and Turkey’s desire for the release of their own political figure, Fethullah Gülen.

America first imposed sanctions on Turkey for the release of Brunson, which caused the Turkish currency, the lira, to lose a third of its value against the American dollar.

Over the weekend, America rejected an offer from Turkey to release Brunson because it was on the condition of them bailing out the Turkish bank Hallbank. Turkish President Erdogan said he believes the US are targeting their economy deliberately.

The court rejected a release request last week from Brunson’s lawyer Ismail Cem Halavurt.

Halavurt told Turkey’s Hurriyet newspaper that once that decision was in writing he would pursue the route of appeal and possibly take it to the European Court of Human Rights.

“We are hopeful regarding the constitutional court, but if it is rejected there, we will go to the European Court of Human Rights without hesitation,” he added.