WHO IS THE LEADER OF TAJIKISTAN?
President Emomali Rahmon is the leader of Tajikistan.
HOW MANY CHRISTIANS LIVE IN TAJIKISTAN?
There are 61,700 Christians in Tajikistan, making up 0.7 per cent of the total population of 9.1 million. Most of them have a Russian background - there are very few indigenous Tajik Christians.
WHY ARE CHRISTIANS PERSECUTED IN TAJIKISTAN?
Sunni Islam is the official religion of Tajikistan, and Islam is seen as part of the Tajik identity. Leaving Islam is seen as a betrayal.
Protestant churches are seen as alien sects that aim to undermine the current political system. All Christian activity is monitored by the government.
WHAT IS LIFE LIKE FOR CHRISTIANS IN TAJIKISTAN?
Christians who share their faith and Christians from Muslim backgrounds face constant scrutiny. To be Tajik is to be Muslim, so becoming a Christian brings shame on the family. The small number of believers from Muslim backgrounds often hide their faith for fear of punishment. Church groups must be registered and sermons must be approved. Those under 18 are forbidden from taking part in religious activities: summer camps have been raided.
"I am really grateful to those who think, worry, and pray for me and my family."
- Pastor Bahrom Kholmatov, imprisoned ON FALSE CHARGES OF 'singing extremist songs in church and so inciting religious hatred’
HOW CAN I HELP CHRISTIANS IN CENTRAL ASIA?
You can give to provide vital support
Open Doors strengthens the persecuted church in Central Asia with Christian literature, training, medical care, relief aid and socio-economic development projects.
£26 could provide four children's Bibles for 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 tajikistan
Lord God, protect each family that follows You. Give confidence and grace to children who know Your love when they are humiliated by teachers and pupils at school. Protect them as they attend summer camps. Give safety to believers who reach out to others with the good news of Your love. By your Holy Spirit, fill each church with Your presence so that they can face restrictions - and even raids - with wisdom, courage and faith.
CENTRAL ASIA RESOURCES: