Worthy Christian News » Christian Persecution » Christian Persecution - Russia & Former USSR » Uzbekistan Protestant sentenced for "teaching religion"

christian news

Worthy Christian News » Christian Persecution » Christian Persecution - Russia & Former USSR » Uzbekistan Protestant sentenced for "teaching religion"

By BosNewsLife News Center in Budapest

TASHKENT/BUDAPEST (BosNewsLife) — A Pentecostal Christian in Uzbekistan faced a difficult Sunday, May 13, after receiving a two-year suspended prison sentence in Nukus, the capital of the Karakalpakstan autonomous republic in north-western Uzbekistan, on charges of teaching religion illegally, human rights watchers and local Christians confirmed.

Salavat Serikbayev was sentenced this week, May)10 to a two-year suspended prison sentence in Nukus, but could be jailed if he commits any further "crime," including giving Bible teaching or other activities the authorities regard as an offence, suggested Forum 18, a major human rights group following the case.

The court reputedly banned Serikbayev from traveling abroad during the two-year period. It also ordered that 20 per cent of the salary of any job Serikbayev gains be taken from by an employer. He currently does not have paid employment, so the fine was not expected to apply yet.

Serikbayev was prosecuted under Article 229-2 of the Criminal Code, which punishes "violating the procedure for teaching religion" and carries a maximum term of three years' imprisonment. He has denied the charges, claiming that police officers who testified that they had seen him "teaching religion" were "lying". Forum 18 said Serikbayev had to defend himself, as he could not afford to pay a lawyer. Officials refused to comment.


The 32-year-old Serikbayev has long faced harassment for his Christian activity, supporters say. In 1999 he reportedly spent four months in prison, while last year he was fined. He also "has been repeatedly warned, threatened and harassed," Forum 18 added.

In addition, local authorities have apparently begun proceedings to deprive him, his wife and their five children of social protection payments, including childcare benefits. Serikbayev, who is from the town of Muynak north of Nukus close to the Aral Sea, was among a group of 18 Protestants reportedly detained when police raided the Nukus home of a Presbyterian Christian Grigory Ten in January.

On April 9 Nukus Criminal Court found Ten guilty of a variety of religious offences under the Code of Administrative Offences. It fined him 621,000 Sums $496), described as a massive sum in Karakalpakstan and more than many local people earn in a year. Unemployment has reportedly reached 80 per cent, and the standard of living here is lower than almost anywhere in Central Asia.


In the latest known instance of harassment, police detained six Protestant women in Nukus on Sunday April 29 for gathering to celebrate a birthday in a private home, Forum 18 cited Protestant sources as saying on condition of anonymity due to fear of reprisals.

The six — together with one man – were handcuffed and "some of the detainees were beaten up by police in custody," Forum 18 said. All six of the detainees were freed on the morning of April 30.

Elsewhere in Uzbekistan, concerns continue to be expressed by friends and family "about the decline in the health of jailed Protestant Pastor Dmitry Shestakov," Forum 18 said in a statement. State-run mass media also continue to attack religious minorities, particularly targeting Protestants, observers say. (With reporting from Uzbekistan).

Copyright 2007 BosNewsLife. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without our prior written consent.

No Comment

Leave a Reply

Copyright 1999-2015 Worthy News. All rights reserved.

Fair Use Notice:This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

What is Worthy News?

Worthy News is an independent Christian news agency which reports news not covered by other outlets, on key developments in a rapidly changing world. Worthy News reaches both Christians and non-Christians around the globe and strives to be balanced and make a difference in these strategic times.

Worthy News. Reliable-Trustworthy-Cutting Edge

Recommended Links

  • Editor’s Blog

    • Historical Cyclical Patterns Emerging in Greece
      Greece defaulted on its IMF loan last night. It is interesting that it was actually the Greek Philosopher Plato who was the first to advocate the "credit" theory of money. His prized student, Aristotle, who […]
    • Reader Question: Where do you get that Sept. 23, 2015 is Jubilee (of Jerusalem)?
      First of all, it is important to know that God is not working on our Gregorian calendar but He is rather fulfilling His Word according to the calendar that He established, which is a 360 […]
    • Are you looking back? Remember Lot's Wife!
      As this shocking Supreme Court decision on Gay marriage settles into the nation, I'm reminded of the passage in Luke where Yeshua (Jesus) told us one of the final signs of His return. He said it […]
    • Supreme Court: Not One but THREE Strikes!
      Most are aware of the recent decision by the Supreme Court on the issue of same-sex marriage, but many may not realize that this was only one of the history-making decisions reached this session. This past month, […]
    • The Water Breaking Moment?
      In Matthew 24, Yeshua (Jesus) makes an interesting correlation between the end of the age and a woman giving birth. [Matthew 24:8]. As the birth of a baby draws near, the birth pangs intensify, and […]
    • Prophetic Calendar for 2015
      As requested by many and after much prayer and research, I have compiled a list of significant events over which we must be praying in the coming months. By listing these events, let it be […]
  • Editor’s Picks

  • 1999-2015 Worthy News » Uzbekistan Protestant sentenced for "teaching religion"