Map reflects the 30 most recent Persecution Reports. Click HERE
for the Map Legend.
Saturday, May 18th, 2013
Persecution in Turkmenistan continues with restriction on Religious literature. In this case, a woman reading Christian literature at work. After her boss complained to officials they showed up at her house, confiscated all religious material, and then proceeded to the house of the man who gave her the literature and confiscated his religious material as well.
“Religious literature is under tight state control. No religious literature may be published in Turkmenistan or imported into the country without permission from the Gengesh. Each title and the number of copies must be specifically approved. State postal authorities hold all religious literature received from abroad, releasing it only when the Gengesh has given written approval. The few books that are approved are stamped as approved by the Gengesh.”
Wednesday, March 13th, 2013
With disturbing reports of persecution against Christians trickling out of a region that appears to exist in the shadows, religious freedom in Central Asia remains a matter of grave concern for the rest of the world.
Wednesday, February 27th, 2013
Turkmenistan's government has changed its officially permitted Muslim administration, including the Chief Mufti and regional imams, Forum 18 News Service reports. It remains to be seen whether the imams will play a role in administering the religious affairs of the country, which in the past have led to restrictions on freedom of religion and belief. The appointments came as the head of the Russian Orthodox Church complained of the difficulties of recovering Soviet-confiscated Orthodox churches and as the Armenian Apostolic Church is battling to resume its activity among Turkmenistan's ethnic Armenian minority.
Monday, January 28th, 2013
While Christians are subjected to extreme levels of repression in Turkmenistan; news comes out only sporadically from this former Soviet nation. It is one of the countries where persecution "statistics" completely fail to bring out the suffering of minorities.
Monday, November 19th, 2012
With increasing restrictions on Christians in Turkmenistan, it is interesting that authorities are taking the burning of a church building seriously. With so many Christians receiving penalties, fines and jail time for their religious involvement, the pastor of the church is nervous from all the attention. "It just seemed like--the questions that they were asking him--they were looking for something other than just a church fire. He's not really sure what the authorities are doing." It’s still unclear whether this was arson or an accident. Regardless, the hits just keep coming for believers in Turkmenistan.
Sunday, November 4th, 2012
This article sheds light on the state of the persecuted church in the 10/40 window. This region of the world sees the highest amount of persecution and is also where most of ICC’s projects are based. Christians often see “their lives threatened, homes destroyed, rights violated and loved ones imprisoned, all because of embracing faith in Jesus Christ".
Thursday, November 1st, 2012
Officials in Turkmenistan are turning up the heat on religious groups. Most notably was the recent harassing of a teacher, who was pulled out of the classroom and interrogated and pressured to reveal the names of other Christians. Also, the number of raids on churches and fining of Christians for being involved in religious activity has greatly increased. Making things difficult for religious groups is typical for this government.
Tuesday, October 30th, 2012
Christians in Central Asia have suffered intense investigation, raids, beatings and fines from authorities in the last few weeks. From the beating of an elderly woman in Turkmenistan to a masked police search of a church in Kazakhstan, Christians are concerned at the increase of attention from authorities. This article summarizes many of the most recent incidences in these Central Asian countries.
Monday, October 15th, 2012
Further updates on the situation in Turkmenistan continue to trickle through the news. This article is a great sum-up of the recent beatings, seizure of literature and fines that Baptists in Turkmenistan have suffered through.
Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012
Eleven Baptists, one as young as 17, were fined two months of wages for holding a worship service at the end of last month. Turkmenistan has made meetings between Protestant Christians illegal.
Friday, September 28th, 2012
In a raid earlier this week police in Turkmenistan attacked an elderly Protestant couple and questioned more than a dozen church members over their involvement in religious activity.
Thursday, September 6th, 2012
Children can have their grades lowered and be ridiculed by teachers because they’re Christians. There were at least three trials and subsequent exorbitant fines against Christians who participated in unregistered religious community. (Read: Bible study in the privacy of your home.) In one of these cases the Christian was told by the judge that he was not allowed to appeal the verdict. Christians have even been told that if they continue to go to church they could lose their jobs or go to jail. "The situation has got markedly worse since July and we don't know why," said one Christian wishing to remain anonymous. We find this outrageous, even though it comes as no surprise.
Saturday, July 28th, 2012
Raymond Ibrahim writes for the Gatestone Institute that, “The bloody jihad waged against Nigeria's Christians, which has seen hundreds killed this year alone, now includes plans to kill Christians with poisoned food, as part of the Islamic organization Boko Haram's stated goal of purging Nigeria of all Christian presence.” Ibrahim’s series, titled ‘Muslim Persecution of Christians,’ is published each month to document cases of persecution – whether it be general discrimination, arrests, or murder – committed by Muslims in majority Islamic countries, Asia and the West.
Wednesday, June 13th, 2012
Turk Christians suffer from unfair laws and treatment by the government. Required to jump through hoops to register their churches, their applications are almost always turned down for one silly reason or another. Due to this, many churches meet unofficially and are raided by the government, and their property seized. One such raid happened earlier this month, followed by “a key Turkmen pastor having a serious automobile accident.” Please pray.
Wednesday, March 28th, 2012
“After the local police officer in Turkmenistan's capital Ashgabad found Bibles in the possessions of three guests at a local Protestant's home, all four were taken to the government's Council for Religious Affairs for questioning, then held for an hour in an overcrowded detention cell, before being taken to court,” Forum 18 News Service reports.
Saturday, March 24th, 2012
Raymond Ibrahim reports for Gatestone Institute that, “Half of Iraq's indigenous Christians are gone, due to the unleashed forces of jihad [holy war]. Many Christians fled to nearby Syria; yet, as the Assad regime comes under attack from al-Qaeda and others… Christians are experiencing a level of persecution unprecedented in the nation's modern history.” Ibrahim’s series, titled ‘Muslim Persecution of Christians,’ is published each month to document cases of persecution – whether it be general discrimination, arrests, or murder – committed by Muslims in majority Islamic countries, Asia and the West.
Friday, March 9th, 2012
“Ahead of the examination of Turkmenistan's record at the UN Human Rights Committee… freedom of religion or belief in Turkmenistan, and other intertwined human rights, remain highly restricted,” Forum 18 News Service reports.
Tuesday, February 21st, 2012
“Nearly 18 months after his August 2010 arrest in Turkmenistan, Protestant pastor Ilmurad Nurliev was among a group of about 230 prisoners freed under amnesty on 18 February from a labour camp,” Forum 18 News Service reports.
Friday, February 10th, 2012
“After Protestant Begjan Shirmedov tried to print copies of a small book of his religious poetry, a local religious affairs official waiting for him at the printing shop took him to the Police 6th Department, responsible for counter-terrorism and organised crime work,” Forum 18 News Service reports.
Saturday, September 17th, 2011
Wednesday, September 7th, 2011
“Members of a Baptist Church from northern Turkmenistan had just arrived for a shared summer holiday in Avaza on the Caspian Sea when the local police officer, eight officials in civilian clothes and the imam… raided their accommodation,” Forum 18 News Service reports.
Tuesday, June 14th, 2011
"While there have been instances of progress over the last year, most of the news is bad. In its latest annual assessment the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom finds 'severe violations of religious freedom and related human rights over the past year'", reports Doug Bandow.
Monday, May 2nd, 2011
Concern is growing for imprisoned Protestant Pastor Ilmurad Nurliev, who is being refused medical treatment for his diabetes, for which he regularly visited a hospital before his August 2010 arrest, Forum 18 News Service reports.
Wednesday, March 16th, 2011
Turkmenistan lifts import controls for Orthodox but not other religions.
Thursday, March 10th, 2011
Nine known religious prisoners in Turkmenistan, including Christians, have not been released despite a UN appeal to the Turkmen government to respect religious freedom, Forum 18 News Service reports.
Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011
Congressman advocates for a Bill to establish a Special Envoy for Religious Minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia to help protect persecuted Christians.
Sunday, February 6th, 2011
“After a 22 January raid on Protestants in a private flat in Turkmenabad in eastern Turkmenistan, a court has imposed heavy fines on about 17 of those present, Protestants who asked not to be identified for fear of state reprisals told Forum 18 News Service.”
Thursday, January 13th, 2011
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) was alarmed by Turkmenistan’s laws prohibiting religious freedom, considering the laws to be “one of the harshest laws on religion of all 15 former Soviet Republics.” The OSCE wants to end the ban on unregistered religious activity, and wants the government to allow an individual’s right to be able to teach religion without government knowledge or authorization, reports Mission Network News.
Thursday, December 30th, 2010
"Turkmenistan has not released any of its nine known religious prisoners of conscience in its latest prisoner amnesty," Forum 18 News Service reports.
Thursday, December 30th, 2010
“Nearly three years after Turkmenistan's government declared "reform" to the Religion Law to be a "priority", the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) has published a legal review of the current Law criticising many of its provisions for violating international human rights standards,” Forum 18 News Service reports.