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ICC Note:
Russia’s recent inspection of churches, religious communities and non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) had many Christians crying foul. While NGO’s are approved for inspection, churches and religious organizations are supposed to be exempt. Recent findings reveal that “extremism” was the key reason for the inspection with one pastor saying that officials “were looking for religious extremism – if our church had any banned extremist literature.”
By Geraldine Fagan
05/30/2013 Turkey (Forum18)- At a 15 April extraordinary meeting on the check-ups hosted by Russia’s Presidential Human Rights Council, Justice Ministry official Tatyana Vaghina stated that her Ministry had looked for – but failed to find – evidence of “extremism” in the 528 checks in which it participated…
In the southern Siberian city of Barnaul (Altai Region) in April, Public Prosecutor and Justice Ministry officials “were looking for religious extremism – if our church had any banned extremist literature,” Pastor Mikhail Kashevarov of the local Cornerstone Pentecostal Church told Forum 18 on 7 May. Ultimately, however, the authorities’ only complaint was that the church had not registered its logo…
a church similarly affiliated to Bishop Sergei Ryakhovsky’s Russia-wide Pentecostal Union was initially accused of “extremism” when a Public Prosecutor inspection found its statutes did not specify that non-citizens could participate in its activity as well as Russian citizens, Moscow-based Sova reported on 26 April. However, these “laughable” accusations were soon dropped, Ryakhovsky’s chief assistant Konstantin Bendas told Forum 18 on 14 May.

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