Turkmenistan: "If You Adopt Their Faith, I'll Tear Off Your Head"

Source:  www.assistnews.net

Date:  2013-09-18

By Jeremy Reynalds
Senior Correspondent for ASSIST News Service

TURKMENISTAN (ANS) -- During interrogation, Pastor Ilmurad Nurliev, a former religious prisoner of conscience, many of his relatives and members of his unregistered Protestant congregation have been threatened and insulted.

That's been occurring in Turkmenistan since Sept. 15. Turkmenistan is one of the Turkic states in Central Asia.

According to a story by Felix Corley for the Forum 18 News Service, one police officer threatened to "tear off" the head of one of his relatives if she adopted "their faith," the pastor told Forum 18.

"Who is threatening him? We simply need to know more about him," an officer of Mary Police Criminal Investigation Department told Forum 18.

No one at Turkmenistan's Foreign Ministry could explain why it had told the United Nations Human Rights Council in follow-up to the UPR review that "no laws" restrict the rights of unregistered religious communities.

That when wide-ranging new Administrative Code punishments have just been adopted.

"Our Ambassador to the UN, Esen Aydogdyev, will be answering all these questions at the Human Rights Council session in Geneva on 18 to 20 September," the official told Forum 18 and hung up the phone.

For more information visit www.forum18.org

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