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Fifteen Turkish congregants and their leaders have been targeted since August 27th by a strident campaign of death threats sent to their Facebook pages, email addresses, websites and mobile phones. The threats followed the style and jargon typically used by Islamic State (IS/ISIS), vowing to kill, massacre and behead apostates whose messages have allegedly "chosen the path that denies Allah" and "dragged others into believing...."

"Threats are not anything new for the Protestant community who live in this country and want to raise their children here," explains a representative of the Association of Protestant Christians in Turkey during a press release. "But with the recent increase in systematic threats...we think these messages, coming close together and resembling each other, are from the same source."

The majority of these Turkish congregation members are former Muslims who have converted to Christianity. In contrast to most Muslim-majority nations, Turkish citizens have the legal right to change their religious identity or leave the religion column on their identification card blank. For more information on the persecution of Christians in Turkey, please go to our Turkey Country Report.

Let's uphold in prayer these Turkish believers who have been threatened, asking that the Lord's protection and reassuring presence be evident among them. Pray also for the country's authorities; in particular, those who are endeavouring to thwart the perpetrators of violent acts throughout the Middle East. In the midst of these present challenges, may God continue overseeing the growth of His church in Turkey, calling to repentance and salvation even those who want to render harm to His people.

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Country Information

Population
82,482,383 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Turkish (70-75), Kurdish (19), other minorities (7-12)

Religion (%)
Islam (99.8), other (0.2)

Leader
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2014)

Government type
Parliamentary republic

Legal system
Civil law system derived from various European continental legal systems

Sources: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Turkey

Prayerfully uphold those who have had their churches and places of worship taken over by a government that does not represent their beliefs, values or ordinances. Ask the Lord to oversee the mediation process as church officials and government representatives endeavour to work out a solution that is both honouring to Him and fair to all the members of the various churches. Despite the challenges experienced by the believers of this country, may they have a sense of God's reassuring presence and peace, knowing that one day He will reign supremely and justly over the entire earth.

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