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Many religious communities in Azerbaijan and Tajikistan have not yet re-registered with authorities, as required by restrictive religion laws that were passed in both countries earlier this year (for more information, click here and here). If religious communities fail to register by January 1, 2010, they will be considered illegal.

As of December 16, only about 100 of the 534 religious communities in Azerbaijan that previously had registration statuses have re-registered. Amendments to the Religion Law will require communities to provide an increased range of information when applying for registration and to obtain approval to build or rebuild worship places. Additional amendments include a ban on the sale of religious literature in unapproved locations and on religious activity outside registered addresses.

In Tajikistan, fewer than half of the religious communities in the country have been re-registered. The highly restrictive Religion Law imposes state censorship on all religious literature, bans state officials from being among the founders of a religious community, requires state approval to invite foreigners for religious visits or to travel abroad for religious events, and restricts children's religious activity and education. (Source: Forum18)

Pray that authorities in Azerbaijan and Tajikistan will respect freedom of religion. Pray that Christians in former Soviet republics will echo Peter's sentiment and be determined to obey God regardless of what man says (Acts 5:29).

To find out more about the hardships Christians face in Azerbaijan and Tajikistan, go to the Azerbaijan Country Report and the Tajikistan Country Report.

Current Ministry Project

VOMC has come alongside project partners to offer an English camp as an opportunity for evangelism and outreach among youth and young adults. Camp participants are invited to embrace the Good News of the Gospel through the platform of the English Camps.

Project Fund: Equipping the Saints

Country Information

8,990,874 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Tajik (84.4), Uzbek (11.9), Other (3.7)

Religion (%)
Muslim (98), Other (2)

President Emomali Rahmon (1994)

Government type
Presidential republic

Legal system
Civil law system

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Tajikistan

Pray God will provide for the physical needs of the people of Tajikistan.

Pray freedom of religion will be respected by the government.


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Tajikistan News

  • Fines for Bible Translation
    Tajik Bible

    Over the past six months, the leaders of four different churches in Tajikistan have received huge fines because they were part of a plan to create a new Tajik translation of the Bible. According to some Tajik Christians, the current translations available in their language use archaic words and some

  • Pastor Released Early
    Pastor Bakhrom Kholmatov and his wife - Photo: World Watch Monitor
    Pastor Bakhrom Kholmatov and
    his wife (undated image).
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    In April 2017, Pastor Bakhrom Kholmatov was arrested and charged with "singing extremist songs in church and so inciting religious hatred." In July of that year, he had been sentenced to three years in prison (read mo

  • Clampdown on Christianity
    Pastor Batyr - Photo: Release International www.releaseinternational.org
    Pastor Batyr
    Photo: Release International

    Throughout Central Asia, Christians are facing worship bans, arrest and torture as Islamic nationalism gains ground. In late August, we reported on a group arrested in Tajikistan for distributing Christian literature (read the report). Similar incidents ar

  • Arrested and Fined for Evangelism
    Pamir Mountains - Photo: Wikipedia / FrancisTyers
    Photo: Wikipedia / FrancisTyers

    Ten Christians were arrested by security police in the Pamir Mountains of Tajikistan on August 7th. The group was distributing Christian literature in Russian, Tajik and various local languages when they were detained. According to a ministry partner of Release Intern