20 July 2018

UZBEKISTAN: Criminal prosecution for sharing beliefs

Jehovah's Witnesses Yevgeni Kupayev and Natalya Kupayeva face criminal trial on 23 July for sharing their beliefs. Police acted illegally during latest arrests, and a male police officer searched the bodies of women. Officials have refused to answer Forum 18's questions about their actions. [read more...]

18 July 2018

UZBEKISTAN: More legal personality restrictions imposed

Uzbekistan has added two new restrictions for religious communities seeking legal status. Many communities are afraid to seek legal status, and if they seek it have been punished. "Give us freedom of religion and belief, [and] we will ask for registration" a Protestant told Forum 18. [read more...]

12 July 2018

RUSSIA: 53 Jehovah's Witnesses facing criminal prosecution - list

Full list of 53 Jehovah's Witnesses charged or named as suspects or currently on trial for "extremism"-related offences as of 11 July 2018. Of these, 22 are in detention, 3 under house arrest and 27 under travel restrictions. Only one is not under restrictions as the criminal investigation proceeds. [read more...]

11 July 2018

RUSSIA: Criminal prosecutions of 50+ Jehovah's Witnesses

Prosecutors are investigating at least 50 Jehovah's Witnesses in 16 Russian regions on "extremism" criminal charges. Of these, 21 men and 1 woman are known to be in detention, with 3 more under house arrest and 27 under travel restrictions. If convicted, they could receive lengthy jail terms. [read more...]

10 July 2018

TURKMENISTAN: Last-ditch appeal against 12-year jail terms

On 11 July, Turkmenistan's Supreme Court is reportedly due to hear the appeal by five men jailed in August 2017 for 12 years each. The men were punished for meeting to study their faith using the works of theologian Said Nursi, the first such known prosecution in Turkmenistan. [read more...]

4 July 2018

KAZAKHSTAN: 76 known administrative prosecutions in six months

Of 76 known administrative prosecutions in the first half of 2018 for exercising freedom of religion or belief, 65 ended with fines of up to four months' average wages. A quarter of those punished also received three-month bans on activity. Meeting for worship, offering religious literature and sharing faith without state permission triggered such punishments. [read more...]

2 July 2018

RUSSIA: Two years' jail to punish religious study meetings

The two-year jail term a Novosibirsk court handed to Imam Komil Odilov on 29 June brings to 13 the number of people known to have been given custodial sentences to punish them for meeting with others to study Islam using the works of Turkish theologian Said Nursi. [read more...]

26 June 2018

UZBEKISTAN: Freed from punishment, but property ordered destroyed

Three Muslims convicted in separate criminal cases for possessing Islamic texts are seeking to have their convictions overturned. Gayrat Ziyakhojayev in Tashkent received no punishment, but his computer and phone were ordered destroyed. "I do not want to carry a criminal record," he told Forum 18. [read more...]