IRF - Institute for Religious Freedom, Kyiv, Ukraine

Russian militants wreaked havoc in the Baptists’ house of prayer in Brianka of Luhansk region PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 28 September 2018 13:40
On-the-scene photo:

The armed militants of the occupation authorities of Luhansk region took over the Evangelical Christian Baptists` house of prayer in Brianka, forced all the believers out and wreaked havoc.

This information was confirmed to the Institute for Religious Freedom by the All-Ukrainian Union of Evangelical Christian-Baptist Churches leadership, which also commented on the current situation.

At the moment, the militants of the occupation authorities left the church building after they had discovered that it was a private property of one of the believers and had checked the relevant documents. Before leaving the house of prayer, the representatives of occupation authorities turned the whole place upside down, the believers said to the IRF.

“This church served up water and food for free during the warfare. Hundreds of people used to come for water and food at the most critical time. Until recently, the church has been giving shelter to those in need, regardless of their religious and national identity,” Petro Dudnyk, a volunteer and pastor of the Evangelical Church in Sloviansk, pointed out.

The IRF reminds that in July, 2018 the occupation authorities of Luhansk region proclaimed the Evangelical Christians Baptists Churches to be “extremist,” and their activities were described as “destructive.” The church was accused of “mandatory re-registration” subtraction.

Earlier, on March 27, Russian-backed militants looted the house of worship of Evangelical Christian Baptists in the city of Stakhanov in Luhansk region.

As the IRF previously reported, the occupation authorities of the non-government controlled territories of Ukraine in Donetsk and Luhansk regions keep persecuting people on religious grounds. In particular, the Russian-backed occupation administrations enforce the religious organizations to undergo the procedure of re-registration, threatening with confiscation of church property. At the same time, some of religious communities have already been victims of arbitrary searches, robberies or complete closure of their temples and houses of worship.

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