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Pastor Nurliev
Photo from ASSIST News Service
On October 21, Protestant Pastor Ilmurad Nurliev was jailed for four years on charges of swindling -- allegations his family and fellow church members strongly deny (for more information, click here). He is likely to be sent to the Seydi labour camp, where there have been claims of psychotropic (mind-altering) drugs being given to prisoners. Those close to Pastor Nurliev are seriously concerned for his health, as the court ordered forced treatment for alleged drug addiction. They reported that Pastor Nurliev, a diabetic, looked "very, very pale and thin" at the trial.

Among "witnesses" produced by authorities was a woman already in jail on criminal charges, whom authorities claim gave Pastor Nurliev money. Friends of Pastor Nurliev, who were present at the trial, said that "it was clear the whole thing was set up." Nurliev was surrounded at the trial by MSS secret police officers, who prevented his wife from coming close to her husband.

Please pray Pastor Nurliev will be given the strength to endure this ordeal. Pray that he and his wife will know of the Lord's promises and His presence. Pray the truth will come to light regarding these charges. Pray for his release.

Find out more about the treatment of believers in Turkmenistan by visiting the Turkmenistan Country Report.

Current Ministry Projects

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Project Funds: Equipping the Saints, Underground Church

Country Information

5,579,889 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Turkmen (85), Uzbek (5), Russian (4), other (6)

Religion (%)
Islam (93), Christian (6.4)

President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow (2007)

Government type
Presidential republic; authoritarian

Legal system
Civil law system with Islamic law influences

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Turkmenistan

Pray that the Lord will give the suffering members of the church in Turkmenistan the strength and determination to stand firm amid opposition and oppression. May they be granted opportunities to meet together for meaningful times of worship, Bible study and fellowship – encouraging and edifying one another in the Christian faith. Despite governmental restrictions, and the threat of fine or imprisonment, may the church in Turkmenistan flourish and bear much good fruit.


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Turkmenistan News

  • Christmastime Raid
    Christians studying the Bible - Photo: World Watch Monitor www.worldwatchmonitor.org
    Pray that Turkmen believers will have opportunities to share God’s truths.
    Photo: World Watch Monitor

    A group of women who gathered on December 26th had their worship time disrupted by a police raid. The home was searched and cell-phones were confiscated. The women were forced to give legal statemen

  • Christian Imprisoned for Faith Released!

    A prisoner who was charged disproportionately because of his Christian faith has been released from prison after nearly three years behind bars. Umid Gojayev, 32, was freed through prisoner amnesty on February 17th. Turkmenistan's president signed a decree initiating the amnesty to mark the country'

  • Christian Leader Fined Following Police Raid

    A Christian leader from Galkynysh in Lebap Region was recently fined two weeks' average local wages following a police raid. The authorities stopped Narmurad Mominov just as he left the home of a Christian family he had been visiting. Narmurad was ordered to stay at the home, where he and the other

  • Follower of Jesus Endures Detention for His Faith
    Umid Gojayev

    Umid Gojayev, a 30-year-old husband and father of three young children, is continuing to be held in detention because of his faith.

    In early 2012, Umid had an argument with four neighbours over access to a well where they live in Dashoguz. In the scuffle, Umid was forced to defend himse