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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

VOMC works with project partners to help strengthen and equip husbands and wives who are serving in ministry in this region.

Project Funds: Equipping the Saints, Underground Church

Country Information

Population
5,579,889 (July 2021 est.)

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

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

Leader
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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