Photo: raid on believers in the Nizhny Novgorod region (July 2019)

Actions of Law Enforcement Officers

At least 17 searches have been carried out in Karelia and 3 criminal cases for faith have been initiated


The wave of religious persecution in Russia reached Karelia. The local FSB department opened three criminal cases against Jehovah's Witnesses at once, namely against 44-year-old Aleksey Smelov from Kondopoga, 42-year-old Maxim Amosov and 57-year-old Nikolai Leshchenko from Petrozavodsk. On July 31, 2019, each of them was searched, and a written undertaking not to leave was taken from them.

In total, 6 searches were carried out in the homes of believers in the city of Kondopoga, and at least 11 more searches were carried out in Petrozavodsk. In general, the FSB officers behaved politely, however, unreasonably invading the personal space of law-abiding citizens, law enforcement officers violate human rights enshrined in Russian legislation.

In recent months, the pressure on Jehovah's Witnesses has only increased. In total, after the decision of the Supreme Court, searches were carried out in 613 houses of believers.