UZBEKISTAN: 15-DAY JAIL TERM FOR TEACHING BAPTIST BELIEFS
A court in Uzbekistan’s capital Tashkent has given a 15-day prison term to Pavel Nenno, a deacon of a registered Baptist Church, Forum 18 News Service has learnt.
Nenno was prosecuted after a raid involving the NSS secret police on his home, where he was “feeding neglected children from poor families” Protestants told Forum 18. In a separate case, 17 people associated with a registered Bukhara Full Gospel church were each fined 100 times the minimum monthly salary, following a raid on a birthday party for a church member.
The church had previously been warned for religious activity away from its legal address. In both cases, children’s religious activity was identified by the authorities as a factor in their harsh sentences. Asked by Forum 18 why she was opposed to children attending church, one Bukhara headteacher replied that “I want our children to develop.”
Pavel Peichev, General Secretary of the Uzbek Baptist Union, has published an open letter condemning “increased persecution of believers in all regions” and “a wave of arrests and searches”.
Report from the Christian Telegraph