Uzbekistan has enacted a Prevention Law aimed at preventing all practise of religion without state permission. The law empowers state bodies, committees and district councils to enforce religion laws and requires them to report those they suspect might be guilty of religious crimes, such as “teaching” religion or storing religious materials without permission.
Persecution against Protestants has escalated as police raids, administrative detentions and massive fines are issued to believers for simply sharing their faith or possessing Christian materials. Police brutality and torture are endemic.
On 8 May Murot Turdiyev was beaten and then strangled by police until he lost consciousness. Another Protestant, Murot Kuzebayeva, is so afraid that she has been in hiding since police raided her home 12 months ago.
Uzbekistan is a secular state, but religion is tightly controlled. Christians are a mere 0.75% of the population – about half of them are Orthodox and the rest are predominantly Protestant. Following global trends, Uzbekistan’s Muslims are being radicalised and as radicalisation advances, so too does Muslim intolerance of Christians, especially those who witness to Muslims.
Source: Religious Liberty Prayer Bulletin
- Pray the Lord will minister and bring healing to Turdiyev, Kuzebayeva and others who have been directly affected by the actions of the government.
- Pray the Lord will give Uzbekistan’s Christians, especially pastors and evangelists, great wisdom as they seek to navigate the increasingly hostile and difficult environment.
- Pray for church unity so that believers will be a blessing to each other through testing times.
UZBEKISTAN: Raids, Criminal Charges, Bible Destruction
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