Photo: Invasion of Jehovah's Witnesses in Crimea (March 2019)
Searches and Arrests for Faith in CrimeaCrimea
On March 20, 2019, in the Crimean cities of Yalta and Alupka, at least 6 homes of local followers of the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses were attacked by FSB officers. A criminal case was opened against the believers under the article "organization of the activities of an extremist organization." Several people were detained for questioning. 34-year-old Artem Gerasimov was taken to the republican center - Simferopol.
During the searches, computers and other electronic devices, as well as Bibles, were seized from believers. The case against the believers is being conducted by FSB investigators A. Lavrov and S. Bosiev.
Earlier, on November 15, 2018, a major operation against believers took place in Dzhankoy (Crimea).
Law enforcers mistakenly mistake citizens' religion for participation in the activities of an extremist organization. Prominent public figures of Russia, the Human Rights Council under the President of the Russian Federation, the President of the Russian Federation, as well as international organizations - the European Union External Action Service, observers of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights - drew attention to this problem. Jehovah's Witnesses have nothing to do with extremism and insist on their complete innocence. The Russian government has repeatedly stated that the decisions of the Russian courts on the liquidation and prohibition of organizations of Jehovah's Witnesses "do not assess the doctrine of Jehovah's Witnesses, do not contain a restriction or prohibition to practice the above teachings individually."