Statistics and Overview

More than 2,000 Homes of Jehovah's Witnesses Have Been Searched in the Last Six Years. See interactive map

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Since the 2017 ban on Jehovah's Witnesses, more than 2,000 The homes of believers were searched for many hours, dividing the lives of entire families on before and after. Almost 400 people were thrown behind bars, The charges were brought against 730 believers. On the interactive map you can find information about where and when the searches took place, as well as their Quantity.

A search is a significant restriction of a person's constitutional right to privacy, personal and family secrets, honor and Good name. Although believers do not resist, many during searches are insulted, intimidated with weapons or special means, some beaten and even tortured.

Which regions are leading in terms of the number of searches? The map shows that the searches took place almost all over Russia - in 77 regions. The largest of them the number took place in the Krasnoyarsk Territory (119), in the Primorsky Territory (97), in Krasnodar Territory (92), Voronezh Region (79), Stavropol Region region (65), in the Rostov region (56), in the Chelyabinsk region (55), in Moscow (54), Trans-Baikal Territory (53), Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Region district (50), in the Kemerovo region (47), in Tatarstan (46), in Khabarovsk Territory (44), in the Astrakhan Region (43), in the Kirov Region (41). On the Crimean peninsula, including Sevastopol, the Russian authorities conducted a total of 98 searches of Jehovah's Witnesses.

Surgut, Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, 2018
Surgut, Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, 2018
Togliatti, September 2022
Togliatti, September 2022
Astrakhan region, 2020
Astrakhan region, 2020
Chelyabinsk, September 2022
Chelyabinsk, September 2022
Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, 2019
Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, 2019
Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, 2016
Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, 2016
Saransk, 2019
Saransk, 2019
Moscow, November 2020 Photo source: Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
Moscow, November 2020 Photo source: Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
Moscow, February 2021 Photo source: Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
Moscow, February 2021 Photo source: Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
The photo shows real searches of Jehovah's Witnesses in different cities

What were the most ambitious special operations against believers? Most Mass operations against believers, carried out in one day, were 64 searches in Voronezh (July 2020), 35 searches in Sochi (October 2019), 27 searches in Astrakhan (June 2020), 27 searches in Nizhny Novgorod (July 2019), 23 searches in Chita (February 2020), 23 searches in Krasnoyarsk (November 2018), 22 searches in Unecha and Novozybkov Bryansk region (June 2019), 22 searches in Birobidzhan (May 2018), 22 searches in Moscow (November 2020), 22 searches in Surgut (February 2019), 20 searches in Kirsanov Tambov region (December 2020).

The largest one-day special operations of the last 12 months were 17 searches in Vladivostok (March 2023), 16 searches in Simferopol on the Crimean peninsula (December 2022), 13 searches in Chelyabinsk (September 2022), 16 searches in Rybinsk Yaroslavl region (July 2022).

Graph: Special Forces Against Jehovah’s Witnesses Proceeded Without Noticeable Outbursts and Lulls
Graph: Special Forces Against Jehovah's Witnesses Proceeded Without Noticeable Outbursts and Lulls

What searches were accompanied by beatings, torture and torture? In the An incomplete list of special operations in which law enforcement officers used rough force against believers, includes searches in Omsk (July 2018), in Razdolny, Primorsky Krai (July 2018), in Surgut (February 2019), in Chita (February 2020), in Voronezh (July 2020), in Moscow (February 2021), in Irkutsk (October 2021), in Samara (December 2021).

A special operation in Voronezh, which took place in July 2020, turned out to be the largest raid on Jehovah's Witnesses in modern history. The Investigative Committee reported, that more than 110 searches were conducted. From the capital of the region alone 64 searches were reported. Five believers stated bullying And Torture on the part of the security forces. Ten people were sent to the pre-trial detention center. Yuriy Galka and Anatoly Yagupov were able to convey from the pre-trial detention center that on the day of their detention They were strangled with bags, and also beaten, demanding confessions. In addition, believers Alexander Bokov and Dmitry spoke about the beatings Katyrov and Alexander Korol.

Andrey Tolmachev
Andrey Tolmachev

A special operation in Irkutsk, which took place in October 2020, was accompanied by an assault on windows and doors in the homes of believers, some were beaten and tortured, for example, Anatoly Razdobarov and Nikolai Merinov, as well as their wives. In the During the medical examination, these and other believers recorded multiple injuries. Andrey Tolmachev, the only son of retired parents, was beaten to the rescue during the search loss of consciousness right before their eyes. He was placed in a pre-trial detention center, where he has been for more than 600 days, as well as Seven other Irkutsk Jehovah's Witnesses.

Vardan Zakaryan a week after the search and beating
Vardan Zakaryan a week after the search and beating

A special operation in Moscow, which took place in November 2020, was widely covered in Russian Television. Security forces in helmets and bulletproof vests, with machine guns broke out doors, threw believers on the floor, handcuffed their hands behind their backs or plastic clamps. During one search, the security forces at first They twisted the hands of the neighbor of the believers, but when they realized that they had made a mistake, they began break down the door to the apartment of believers. The head of the family had his hands twisted, They threw him to the floor and, pressing him with the butt of a machine gun, hit him on the back. In the In another case, 49-year-old Vardan Zakaryan had his head smashed by law enforcement officers the butt of the machine. The believer was hospitalized and was in the hospital under reinforced Protection.

Zayshchuk Elena
Zayshchuk Elena

How many people have been prosecuted in criminal cases for their faith? In total, according to the data of June 8, 2023, over the past 6 years, criminal 730 people, including 166 women, were persecuted. Almost A quarter of all victims of criminal prosecution for their faith are people over 60 years old - 173 people. The oldest is 89-year-old Elena Zayshchuk from Vladivostok. In May 2023, during a raid on believers in Novocheboksarsk (Chuvashia), an 85-year-old learned about the criminal prosecution local believer Yuriy Yuskov.

Review of the most large-scale and dramatic events of the first three years (2017-2020) related to searches can be found in the article "Careful, The doors are knocked out! The number of searches in the homes of peaceful believers reaches 1,000 for 3 years."