Trump Celebrates Release Of Pastor Brunson

Saagar Enjeti | White House Correspondent

President Donald Trump celebrated the release of Pastor Andrew Brunson who was detained for nearly two years by Turkish authorities, in a Friday morning tweet. (RELATED: Turkey’s President Arrests More Than 100 People Related To Failed 2016 Coup)

US pastor Andrew Craig Brunson escorted by Turkish plain clothes police officers arrives at his house on July 25, 2018 in Izmir. - Turkey on July 15, 2018 moved from jail to house arrest US pastor Andrew Brunson who has spent almost two years imprisoned on terror-related charges, in a controversial case that has ratcheted up tensions with the United States. Andrew Brunson, who ran a protestant church in the Aegean city of Izmir, was first detained in October 2016 and had remained in prison in Turkey ever since. (Photo by - / AFP) (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

US pastor Andrew Craig Brunson escorted by Turkish plain clothes police officers arrives at his house on July 25, 2018 in Izmir. – Turkey on July 15, 2018 moved from jail to house arrest US pastor Andrew Brunson who has spent almost two years imprisoned on terror-related charges, in a controversial case that has ratcheted up tensions with the United States. Andrew Brunson, who ran a protestant church in the Aegean city of Izmir, was first detained in October 2016 and had remained in prison in Turkey ever since. (Photo by – / AFP) (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

Brunson was detained in alleged connection with an attempted coup against Erdogan in 2016. The U.S. government maintained consistently that Brunson was being unfairly treated and used as leverage in negotiations with the U.S. government.

TOPSHOT - EDITORS NOTE: Graphic content / Turkish solders stay with weapons at Taksim square as people protest against the military coup in Istanbul on July 16, 2016. Turkish military forces on July 16 opened fire on crowds gathered in Istanbul following a coup attempt, causing casualties, an AFP photographer said. The soldiers opened fire on grounds around the first bridge across the Bosphorus dividing Europe and Asia, said the photographer, who saw wounded people being taken to ambulances. / AFP / OZAN KOSE (Photo credit should read OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images)

TOPSHOT – EDITORS NOTE: Graphic content / Turkish solders stay with weapons at Taksim square as people protest against the military coup in Istanbul on July 16, 2016.
Turkish military forces on July 16 opened fire on crowds gathered in Istanbul following a coup attempt, causing casualties, an AFP photographer said. The soldiers opened fire on grounds around the first bridge across the Bosphorus dividing Europe and Asia, said the photographer, who saw wounded people being taken to ambulances.
/ AFP / OZAN KOSE (Photo credit should read OZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images)

Turkey released Brunson Friday after a Judge removed all controls on his travel. He was previously placed in detention and house arrest for alleged espionage charges. Turkey’s detention of Brunson significantly escalated tensions between the U.S. and Turkey even sparking the imposition of sanctions on the country. The situation is particularly unusual because both countries are NATO allies.

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