Large gathering of Jehovah's Witnesses arouses suspicion of extremist activity


SOVA Center for News and Analysis, 14 November 2016


In Petrovpavlovsk-Kamchatsky personnel of law enforcement agencies broke out a window in a building where a Jehovah's Witnesses worship service was being conducted, interrupted the service, and conducted a search.


On 13 November 2016 in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, two armed operatives in masks smashed a window in a residential building where about 100 persons were gathered for a Jehovah's Witnesses service. The operatives entered the premises through the broken window, opened a door from inside, and let in another approximately 20 personnel of law enforcement agencies, among whom were the assistant prosecutor of Kamchatka territory, Anton Uvarov, and a police lieutenant, Evgeny Kurdenkov.


Without presenting any kind of warrant, the intruders questioned the congregants, recorded their passport information, and conducted a search. The siloviki used an iron bar to open several rooms. Equipment and disks were seized. The believers said that the disks might have been planted, since they were found beside the window smashed by the operatives.


"A large number of people were on the territory of the building, which means signs of extremist activity may be seen," A. Uvarov explained what was happening.


As a result of the actions of the siloviki, one believer became ill and the woman was hospitalized.


When in the evening two believers went to the building to repair the window, they were arrested for disobeying police officers and they were taken away to a temporary detention cell. (tr. by PDS, posted 14 November 2016)


Source: Administrative Center of Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia, 14 November 2016

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