Persecution Update November 2013: Turkmenistan

Ilmurad NurlievBelievers in the Central Asian country of Turkmenistan are suffering under a combination of a Soviet-style dictatorship and a strong Islamic religious system. In 2010 Pastor Ilmurad Nurliev, age 48, was framed on false charges and sentenced to four years of hard labor in a prison camp. He was given mind-altering drugs that are frequently used to re-educate Christian prisoners, while medications for his diabetic condition were withheld. Though he was released early in 2012, the police began last month to again harass him, his wife, and even his church members. All the believers who signed the church’s registration application are now being summoned to the police department and have been subjected to long interrogations and threatening demands to furnish the names of all their relatives. Though no criminal charges have yet been filed against them, Pastor Nurliev’s family and church members are being fingerprinted and photographed. Please pray for God’s grace for this faithful pastor, his family, and his fellow believers as they face persecution for the sake of the Cross.