WHO IS THE LEADER OF AZERBAIJAN?
President Ilham Aliyev is the leader of Azerbaijan.
HOW MANY CHRISTIANS LIVE IN AZERBAIJAN?
There are 321,000 Christians in Azerbaijan. They make up just over three per cent of the total population of 9.9 million. Most of the Christians there are from a Russian or Armenian background, but there are around 10,000 Azeri Christians.
WHY ARE CHRISTIANS PERSECUTED IN AZERBAIJAN?
Azeri Christians are considered traitors, betraying not only Islam but also their country.
Most of the persecution of Christians in Azerbaijan comes from government officials at various levels - no religious activities beyond state-run and state-controlled institutions are allowed.
WHAT IS LIFE LIKE FOR CHRISTIANS IN AZERBAIJAN?
Since 1991, when the country gained independence from the former Soviet Union, all churches have been obliged to re-register at least six times, with fewer congregations managing to pass each time. Unregistered churches face the constant threat of raids, confiscations and fines. Arrests and beatings occur on a very regular basis. Fear that churches have been infiltrated by informers means that no one knows whom to trust.
Those who are known to be Christians have difficulty in finding a job. Christians from Muslim backgrounds bear the brunt of persecution, both at the hands of the state and from friends and family.
HOW CAN I HELP CHRISTIANS IN central asia?
You can give to provide vital support
Open Doors strengthens the persecuted church in Central Asia through literature distribution, training, income-generating projects and relief aid.
£26 could provide Bibles for four children in Central Asia
You can SPEAK OUT
Sign up for advocacy alerts for updates on how you can be a voice for our persecuted church family.
You can pray
Brother Andrew, the founder of Open Doors, says, “Our prayers can go where we cannot... There are no borders, no prison walls, no doors that are closed to us when we pray.”
A PRAYER FOR AZERBAIJAN
Heavenly Father, please strengthen and comfort our brothers and sisters in Azerbaijan who suffer for you. Give them wisdom, by Your Spirit, to know whom to trust, and patience and courage as they live for You. Endow them with creativity and faith to overcome the obstacles of meeting together and sharing You with others.
CENTRAL ASIA RESOURCES: