Web of prosecutions of Jehovah's Witnesses expands in Russian northwest


59-year-old Mikhail Gordeev was arrested at workplace and placed under pledge not to depart

Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia, 11 September 2019


On 5 September, in Petrozavodsk (Karelia) agents of the directorate of the FSB arrested Mikhail Gordeev right at his place of work, having suspected him of professing the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses. The man was searched, a tablet was taken from him, and he was transported to the department of the FSB for questioning.


The inspector Grigoriev provided Mikhail with an attorney at no cost. The questioning lasted four hours. A criminal case was opened against the believer based on part 1 of article 282.2 of the CC RF (organizing extremist activity). He was suspected of "continuation of the activity in the city of Petrozavodsk of an extremist religious organization" He was released on his own recognizance.


The prosecution of residents of Karelia on the basis of religious identity began in late July 2019, when in two cities of the region widespread searches were conducted in homes of believers. The authorities opened criminal cases against Aleksei Semlov, Maksim Amosov, and Nikolai Leshenko. These peaceful citizens are experiencing burdensome unjust criminal prosecution.


In May 2017, a family of Jehovah's Witnesses from Karelia was awarded the order of "Parental Glory." The model parents received the award from the hands of the head of state, Vladimir Putin. (tr. by PDS, posted 11 September 2019)

Background articles:
Actions against Jehovah's Witnesses in Russian northwest
August 1, 2019
Russian president praises Jehovah's Witnesses' family values
June 6, 2017
Total number of searches of Jehovah's Witnesses tops 600
August 6, 2019

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