"He is someone who absolutely loves Turkey," he said, according to the Washington Post.
Halavurt said Brunson will spend two days in Germany before returning to the U.S.
Brunson's case has been a priority of the Trump administration, which imposed sanctions on Turkey to try to secure his freedom. The diplomatic tensions over the pastor's treatment have been blamed for a sell-off against the Turkish currency in international markets, which in turn worsened Turkey's financial crisis.
Other U.S.-Turkey tensions include differences over Syria and Iran and the Turkish government's planned purchase of military equipment from Russia.
His release comes head of the Nov. 6 mid-term elections, and white Evangelical Christians are a key part of the Republican base.
U.S. President Donald Trump mentioned the pastor several times on Twitter on Friday, finally announcing "PASTOR BRUNSON JUST RELEASED. WILL BE HOME SOON!"
Trump's sentiments were echoed by Vice President Mike Pence.
"We thank God for answered prayers," Pence said on Twitter Oct. 12. He praised the efforts of the U.S. State Department to help the pastor and his family.
Rep. Smith praised those who worked successfully for Brunson's release.
"The United States must now hold the perpetrators of his unjust imprisonment accountable by maintaining and strengthening targeted sanctions on complicit Turkish officials," he said.
U.S. officials had sought a release of Brunson that included others detained in Turkey: Serkan Golge, a Turkish-American scientist, as well as three Turkish citizens who had been employed at U.S. diplomatic missions, the New York Times reports.
(Story continues below)
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