Protestant pastor of İzmir church faces deportation from Turkey
İsmail Saymaz – İZMİRA Protestant pastor and his wife, who have been living in Turkey for 20 years, are due to be deported over alleged missionary activities said to be “against national security.”
İzmir Resurrection Church Pastor Andrew Craig Brunson and his wife Norine Lyn Brunson were sent a note by İzmir police after the İzmir Immigration Authority issued a notification on Sept. 28 for their deportation, after their religious activities were alleged to be “against national security.”
The couple went to the police station on Oct. 7 and they are currently being held there until their deportation.
The Brunson family is accused of carrying out missionary activities in Turkey and receiving foreign funds to pursue such alleged actions.
Back in April 2011, Brunson was attacked by a local man while he was in the yard of a church in İzmir. The assailant had reportedly shouted during the attack that he would bomb a church in the nearby province of Manisa, from which he had come to carry out the attack. He was later acquitted of charges of being a member of al-Qaeda.
Meanwhile, the Turkey Association of Protestant Churches announced last week that the Protestant Bridge of Life Church had been closed down by the authorities for allegedly providing unlawful language education.
In another incident, a foreign member of the Ankara Salvation Church was reportedly notified ahead of a trip overseas that his residence permit had been cancelled.