In Kabardino-Balkaria a Court Sentenced a Peaceful Believer

The court believed the improbable: five witnesses for the prosecution who are not Jehovah’s Witnesses confessed to the mass distribution of religious literature under the personal direction of Arkadya Akopyan.


Human Rights Violations Against Believers in the Separatist Donetsk Region of Ukraine in 2018

Публикуются некоторые случаи нарушения прав верующих, которые произошли в 2018 году.

Donetsk Territory in Ukraine

A Verdict in the Case of a 70-Year-Old Believer is Expected on December 27

A verdict in the case of Arkadi Akopyan will be announced in the Prokhladniy District Court. In its closing arguments the prosecutor requested 3 years of incarceration with a suspended sentence. The accused believer in his closing comments requested that he be fully exonerated.


An Overview of the Situation in the Separatist Donetsk Region of Ukraine

В течение 2018 года власти запретили организацию Свидетелей Иеговы, за верующими велась слежка, их вызывали на допросы и грозили арестами.

Donetsk Territory in Ukraine

Witness in Prokhladniy Faces Three-Year Conditional Sentence

Oral arguments began on 21 December 2018 in Kabardino-Balkaria regarding 70-year-old Arkadya Akopyan, who is accused of violating Article 282(1) of the Russian Criminal Code. The prosecutor demands a conditional sentence of three years deprivation of liberty and two years’ probation.


Russia Files Observations With European Court in Glazov LRO and Others v. Russia

This application was filed on behalf of the 395 local religious organisations (LROs) that were liquidated by the Russian Supreme Court in April 2017 along with the Administrative Centre of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia.

Moscow, France

Russia Rejects Witnesses’ Request for Compensation Before ECHR

The Russian government’s position in the international court blatantly contradicts its position in domestic court.

Moscow, France

Vladimir Putin: “Jehovah’s Witnesses Are Also Christians. I Don’t Understand Either Why They’re Being Persecuted”.

“This is complete nonsense. We have to investigate this carefully”, Vladimir Putin commented regarding Jehovah’s Witnesses being included on the list of extremist organisations.


Witness Couple in Omsk Transferred to House Arrest After Five Months in Solitary Confinement

On 4 December 2018, Sergey and Anastasiya Polyakov were transferred to house arrest. The police tried to compel them to incriminate themselves and others. Neither the Polyakovs nor dozens of others imprisoned for their faith throughout Russia are going to make such a deal with investigators.

Omsk Region

Arrests, Searches and Criminal Case in Stavropol

On 9 December 2018 in Neftekumsk, eight searches were conducted, three people were sent to a detention centre and one was put on the wanted list. The reason? ‘They refused to renounce their religious views’.

Stavropol Territory

Third Criminal Case in Kamchatka

On 2 December 2018 in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy, armed police in masks raided one of the homes. Its occupants were suspected of reading the Bible. A criminal case was initiated against 44-year-old Sergey Ledenev, who signed an agreement restricting travel.

Kamchatka Territory

Primorskiy Territory: Criminal Case and Arrests in Spassk-Dalny

On 25 November 2018 on a wave of searches, five people were arrested and sent to a detention centre. Two days later, house arrest was imposed on four of them, and one man was released. In total, in the Primorskiy Territory, at least four criminal cases have been initiated for reasons of faith.

Primorye Territory

New Home Searches of Witnesses in Murmansk Region

On 23 November 2018 in Polyarnyy, the homes of two families were searched, leading to the seizure of Bibles in the synodal translation, a scientific paper on religion, notebooks, notes, a telephone, a computer and tablets.

Murmansk Region

Searches in Dzhankoy — Biggest Operation in Recent Times

On average, 25 agents invaded each home. Several people were harmed to varying degrees. During the searches, money and valuables were stolen.


Mass Searches of Homes in Nevinnomyssk

On 21 November 2018, nine searches were conducted in the Stavropol Territory. Computers and other electronic devices were seized. Residents were taken for interrogation.

Stavropol Territory

Crimea: Victim of Political Repression Hurt During Armed Operation

On 15 November 2018 in Dzhankoy, 78-year-old Aleksandr Ursu was pinned to the wall, fell on his knees and was handcuffed.


In Ivanovo Region, Witness Leaves Detention Centre After 171 Days

On 15 November 2018, the appellate court overturned a ruling to extend the pre-trial detention of Dmitriy Mikhaylov, a 40-year-old resident of Shuya.

Ivanovo Region

Tatarstan: Three More Transferred From Detention Centre to House Arrest

The Supreme Court of the Republic of Tatarstan ruled to put under house arrest Vladimir Myakushin, Aydar Yulmetyev and Konstantin Matrashov. Two of them have already left the detention centre.


Searches and New Arrests in Khabarovsk After Friendly Gathering Disrupted

On 12 November 2018, the court put Vitaliy Zhuk, Nikolay Polevodov and Stanislav Kim behind bars on suspicion of worshipping Jehovah God. The arrests were preceded by an operation to catch Witnesses at a gathering in a cafe.

Khabarovsk Territory

Mass Searches and Criminal Case in Novosibirsk

On November 8, 2018, searches were carried out in the city of Novosibirsk in at least 10 homes of civilians suspected of jointly practicing the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses. Arrested was 64-year-old Yuriy Savelyev. By a decision of Maria Shishkina, judge of the Central District Court of Novosibirsk, he was sent to jail until January 7, 2019.

Novosibirsk Region