22 August 2017

AZERBAIJAN: Torture unpunished; compensation for imprisonment

Muslim Unity Movement deputy leader Abbas Huseynov was beaten and handcuffed "as if crucified" in Qobustan Prison's punishment cell. Appeals brought "no result". Movement leader Taleh Bagirov was sent to punishment cell for requesting a doctor. A Baku court compensated two Jehovah's Witnesses for their year's imprisonment. [read more...]

18 August 2017

KAZAKHSTAN: More legal restrictions to reach parliament

Legal amendments to 4 Codes and 13 Laws (including the already restrictive Religion Law) about to reach parliament seem set to impose further controls and punishments for non-state-approved religious teaching, confiscate religious literature which fails to pass the state censorship, and allow religious organisations to be banned. [read more...]

15 August 2017

KAZAKHSTAN: 30 months' jail for sharing faith

Tekeli Court in Almaty Region jailed 25-year-old Iliyan Raiymzhan for 30 months for alleged membership of Muslim missionary movement Tabligh Jamaat. The Prosecutor claimed "society suffered" because of Raiymzhan's exercise of freedom of religion, but refused to say how or identify any specific victims. [read more...]

9 August 2017

RUSSIA: "Anti-missionary" punishments full listing

More than 180 individuals and communities have been brought to court in the year since "anti-missionary" punishments came into force on 20 July 2016. Forum 18's list of known cases documents the wide range of people and communities across Russia subjected to such punishments. [read more...]

8 August 2017

RUSSIA: One year of "anti-missionary" punishments

In the first year of "anti-missionary" punishments, Forum 18 found 186 cases under Administrative Code Article 5.26, Parts 3, 4 and 5. Of these 138 resulted in initial convictions (135 fines). In 11 cases religious literature was confiscated. Five foreigners were ordered deported (one overturned on appeal). [read more...]

7 August 2017

UZBEKISTAN: Short prison terms, fines after "show trial"

Two Baptists were each given five-day prison terms and three more fined in Karshi to punish them for organising Sunday worship raided by police. A Russian Orthodox priest was forced to attend what Baptists call a "show trial", which was also shown on television. [read more...]

4 August 2017

KAZAKHSTAN: Six fines, one deportation for baptism

After a Protestant Pastor and five foreign guests held baptisms in hot springs near Almaty, a court fined all six and ordered one foreigner deported, deeming they had conducted illegal "missionary activity". A Baptist pastor succeeded in overturning a police fine for leading his church. [read more...]

3 August 2017

KAZAKHSTAN: Fines for offering religious literature

After Transport Police found nine Muslim books in an Astana Airport gift shop, a court fined the company and ordered the shop section closed for three months. This is one of 15 cases to punish freedom of religion so far in one court in 2017. [read more...]