At a tighten of Turkey’s second conference conference opposite US priest Andrew Brunson, his counsel has neatly protested a Izmir court’s faith on tip charge witnesses opposite his client.
Jailed for a past 19 months, a 50-year-old Evangelical Presbyterian apportion was sent behind to his dungeon in a maximum-security jail for another 10 weeks, until a third conference set for 18 July.
“This tip declare emanate is positively outlandish. It is not only compared to a case; a tip declare emanate has a really critical problem,” his lawyer, Ismail Cem Halavurt, told a Deutsche Welle contributor after a hearing.
“This box can't ensue by only relying on tip witnesses’ testimony,” Halavurt said.
“Supporting justification contingency come alongside these allegations. Our Supreme Court decisions per this are really plain: declare testimony claims are not sufficient to lengthen a jailed person’s detention. In annoy of reminding a justice of this repeatedly, [Brunson’s detention] is being continued. This is not acceptable.”
“There is not a singular square of evidence,” he added, referring to a latest marvellous allegations thrown opposite his customer only that morning by a tip declare called ‘Serhat’. The declare claimed Brunson was plotting to set adult a Kurdish Christian state, assisting send US weapons to a Kurdish company in Syria with his “missionary team”, and collaborating with obvious supporters of Fethullah Gülen, a Muslim minister Turkey has demanded be extradited by a US in sell for Brunson.
“Brunson’s recover was obligatory, though unfortunately currently [7 May] his recover did not happen,” Halavurt said, vowing to record a compulsory petitions before a third conference “so this bootleg apprehension will be brought to an end”.
“We will onslaught to get Brunson set free,” he added.
The counsel told reporters he had listened to Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu’s comments about Brunson’s box only hours before a second conference began.
“They contend ‘the [Turkish] supervision should recover him,’” Çavuşoğlu told CNNTURK. “Is it adult to me? This is a preference a law will make.”
But Halavurt pronounced that to consider a government’s domestic statements and opinions will not change a law is illogical, saying: “This box has been overly politicised.”
“Honestly, we don’t have any compensation that this justice is means to make an independent, unprejudiced decision,” Halavurt said. “If we demeanour during a [legal] obligations of a court, this emanate is clear clear; to continue seizure is illegal.”
The counsel pronounced he would insist in perfectionist Brunson’s authorised right to be expelled from control for a generation of a trial, expressing regard that a court’s refusal has caused a priest critical psychological distress.
Sensational domestic allegations
During a 10-hour conference on Monday, 7 May, a charge presented dual tip witnesses who testified around video linkage, with their faces confused on outrageous beyond screens and voices altered. Another 5 witnesses testified plainly in chairman in a courtroom.
At a opening of a hearing, a presiding decider remarkable that companion activity is in fact authorised in Turkey. But a charge declare testimony suggested any individual’s dread of ‘hidden’ motives behind Brunson’s Christian activities, that they compared to his purported involvements with Kurdish terrorism and a now-banned Islamic network of a Fethullah Gülen movement, indicted by Ankara of rising a failed 15 July, 2016 coup to overpower President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s government.
For scarcely dual wayward hours, a tip declare referred to as ‘Serhat’ recounted events and activities in that he claimed Brunson was involved. Although he described himself as a Christian, Serhat certified frequently that he had not himself listened or witnessed a claims he was relating. Rather, he had “seen social-media accounts” displaying a sympathies of some people attending a church for a bootleg Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), or been told things by several sources.
“We leave a building with critical concerns. Today’s 11 hours of record were dominated by furious conspiracies, tortured explanation and tip witnesses, though no genuine justification to pronounce of. Upon these rests a man’s life.”
Sandra Jolley, USCIRF
As coordinator of a ‘religious arm’ of a PKK, Serhat said, Brunson was arranging a send of arms being sent by a US to a Kurdish PYD (Democratic Union Party) affiliates of a PKK. “I schooled this from a son of a diplomat who had worked for years during a US Embassy [in Ankara],” Serhat claimed.
Saying Brunson talked about combining a new state and scheming for a good war, Serhat claimed he had selected a “Kurdish pastor” for south eastern Turkey who was operative among a Syrian refugees to settle Kurdish Christians in all 81 provinces of Turkey.
Categorically denying Serhat’s claims, Brunson told a court: “This declare gave not a singular square of evidence. He said, ‘I listened all this from second- or third-hand individuals.’”
Looking adult during a state prosecutor and row of 3 judges seated on a dais above him, Brunson said: “I am assisting refugees, and they contend I’m helping a PKK. we am environment adult a church, and they contend I’m being upheld by a Gülen network. But this is only written testimony from these witnesses. Where is a proof, a evidence?”
The presiding decider neatly reproved Brunson’s direct for evidence, dogmatic that earthy proof, such as photographs or documents, was not compulsory for a justice to confirm what was convincing evidence.
Prosecution chooses jailed burglar to testify
Brunson announced that he had never seen or met a initial 3 open witnesses, dual of whom were prisoners brought from jail underneath ensure to testify. One of them, Ali Daloğlu, claimed he had celebrated Brunson 3 times along a Turkish limit when a priest was going behind and onward between Suruç, Gaziantep and Şanliurfa, concerned with Syrian Kurds. He also pronounced he had seen Brunson assembly in a hotel in Gaziantep with an active Gülenist, who he pronounced was giving a priest financial assist for Syrian refugees.
Brunson flatly denied ever observant or meaningful Daloğlu or any of a 4 Gülenist suspects he had named, dogmatic his testimony “disgusting”. When Halavurt was invited to review Daloğlu, a counsel quoted from investigate papers he handed over to a court, divulgence that Daloğlu had an ongoing jail record of 14 arrests for vehicle thievery.
The final dual witnesses were personal acquaintances famous to Brunson. A immature neighbour vital nearby Brunson’s home testified he had seen many unfamiliar visitors entrance and going, and had “heard” from Turks who attended another Protestant church that a priest was ancillary PKK propaganda.
The final charge declare named Eyüp Çakir pronounced he had famous Brunson for 6 years and frequently attended his church for some time, though thereafter became worried about a liquid and active impasse of Kurds in a church care and worship, that he deliberate a “provocation” among a Turkish congregation.
“The Turks were flustered in a church,” Çakir claimed, observant other Turks like him motionless to leave since PKK sympathisers shaped a apart organization and were praising a PKK. “In a church there were flags to support a PKK,” he claimed. “The church was like a stay of a PKK… For a past 3 years, his church has been compelling division.”
Brunson was asked by a presiding judge, “Why did we have family with a chairman who was sensitive to a PKK?” The priest responded: “In a church there were both radical [Turkish] nationalists and Kurds. we am compared a same approach to both of them. Actually, to be Kurdish is one thing; to be PKK is another.”
“I responded to all these feign charges in a initial conference of this trial,” Brunson continued. “I wish to contend clearly, a PKK is a militant organisation. we never suspicion differently.” Çakir certified on a declare mount that he non-stop a feign Facebook page in Brunson’s name and began posting pro-terrorist equipment on it, vowing to Brunson: “I will destroy your PKK church.” The priest pronounced he told Çakir, “You are a many dangerous chairman in a church,” and refused to accept him behind into a church.
Three counterclaim witnesses rejected
At a tighten of a hearing, a 20 internal observers seated with Brunson’s mother during a behind of a courtroom were clearly unhappy with a judge’s statute to decrease a pastor’s ask to be sent home underneath residence arrest. But they were repelled to learn that a legal row had only deserted 3 of a 10 counterclaim witnesses prepared to attest on Brunson’s interest during a subsequent hearing, since their names seem in a indictment.
The shutting divide of a complaint lists some-more than 60 people or organisations named via a document, dogmatic them all “suspects” since of declare allegations that they were compared with Andrew Brunson and his activities. Halavurt told World Watch Monitor he is filing a grave criticism over a ostracism of these 3 pivotal witnesses from his counterclaim portfolio.
Representing a US Commission on International Religious Freedom, that has publicly campaigned for Brunson’s recover as a trusting plant of feign rapist charges, Vice Chair Sandra Jolley came from Washington to observe a trial. She was assimilated by Charge d’affaires Philip Kosnett and several consular officials from a US Embassy in Ankara.
Speaking to Turkish reporters outward a building afterwards, Jolley said: “We leave a building with critical concerns. Today’s 11 hours of record were dominated by furious conspiracies, tortured explanation and tip witnesses, though no genuine justification to pronounce of. Upon these rests a man’s life.”
“The law is that this box is partial of a incomparable decrease in personal freedoms, including eremite leisure and tellurian rights, that we are witnessing in Turkey in new years,” Jolley noted. “We are looking to a Turkish law to defend Pastor Brunson’s innocence.”
Brunson’s US-based priest Richard White also flew from North Carolina to attend a hearing. When he returned home, he reportedly told his assemblage (which includes Brunson’s parents) that he was “sad, angry, and resolute” after examination a proceedings.
Official UN exploration begun
This week a American Center for Law and Justice, heading US advocacy efforts for Brunson, reliable that a UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has taken adult his case. Accordingly, before a initial trial conference on 17 April, this eccentric row of general tellurian rights experts sent an central exploration to a Turkish government, requesting that it rebut within 60 days a allegations that Brunson’s apprehension is arbitrary.
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