Turkey: Evangelist detained, to be deported

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Monday, April 18, 2016

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) - In April, Turkey detained an American evangelist and ordered him held for a month with a view to his deportation.

According to Morning Star News, Turkish authorities have accused David Byle of being "a threat to public order" and put him in a holding center for foreigners awaiting deportation.

Byle's attorney said that immigration officials had filed a deportation order against his client upon the recommendation of the Turkish Ministry of the Interior. The government also filed a "no-reentry order" preventing Byle from returning to Turkey after he is deported.

Byle's arrest was just days before he was set to teach a class to Christian Turks on how to evangelize their fellow countrymen.

Police had first arrested Byle for "aggressive" street evangelism back in 2007 in the Beyoglu District of Istanbul. Since then, Byle has been continually in trouble with the Turkish authorities. For example, Byle had been embroiled in a five-year court battle over his Turkish residency status. The case supposedly ended in January 2015 when a court ruled there was no evidence that Byle was ever "a threat to national security and public morals," or that he had committed any crime.

Byle has spent his past imprisonments preaching to his fellow detainees. But during these detentions, his family has only been allowed limited visitations.

UPDATE from Morning Star News:

Turkish authorities have released a U.S. evangelist who was detained last week and ordered to be deported, sources said.

Declaring David Byle “a danger to public order,” authorities in Turkey took him into custody on April 6 after asking him to report to the immigration office in Istanbul regarding his application for a residency permit.

Byle, 46, was released on Thursday (April 14) after a judge overturned the order to detain him for 30 days.

“Praise God, I was released from the deportation center this afternoon, and just arrived home,” Byle wrote on Facebook. “Thanks to all who prayed and did advocacy for me, also to my tireless lawyer and most of all to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ...”

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