On 28 December the City Court in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana increased the punishment handed down to Seventh-Day Adventist Yklas Kabduakasov in November to two years’ imprisonment in a labour camp.
The lower court had given the 54-year-old father of eight a seven-year sentence of restricted freedom at home.
He was prosecuted for alleged incitement of religious hatred while talking to others of his faith, charges he and his fellow church members reject. Secret police officers seized Kabduakasov at the end of the hearing and took him away to prison.
The 12 weeks Kabduakasov spent in pre-trial detention will count towards his two-year prison term.
Kabduakasov’s lawyer Gulmira Shaldykova described the two-year prison term to Madi Bekmaganbetov of Radio Free Europe’s Kazakh Service as “too harsh.” She said she would discuss with her client whether to appeal against the verdict to a higher court.
Source: Forum 18 News Service
- Ask the Lord to give Yklas the physical and spiritual strength he will need for this upcoming test of faith.
- Ask the Lord to pour out His abundant blessing on Yklas’ family so they too may know of His provision, comfort and ministering Spirit.
- Pray that the Lord will provide opportunities for Yklas to share the Gospel, even while in prison. Ask the Lord to use these present sufferings for the spiritual growth of the church in Kazakhstan.