|Sources of Persecution||Dictatorial Paranoia|
|Leader||President Ilham Aliyev|
Officially, Azerbaijan is a secular country with religious freedom. However, Christians are often under surveillance and don’t know who to trust. The law is used to justify fines, police raids, detentions and imprisonments. Spies are also sent to church gatherings. Compulsory re-registration every 6-7 years has led to the de-registration of many churches, making them targets for the authorities who regularly raid meetings, detain believers and confiscate religious materials.
Christians from a Muslim background suffer more persecution. They are threatened and monitored by their family and community, who pressure them to return to Islam. In some areas, converts are beaten, forced into marriage or put under house arrest. Opposition also comes when Christians share the gospel with the Muslim community.
“Sometimes we are losing hope and at other times when we see God’s miracles, we are encouraged and ready to move mountains. In spite of many difficulties that Christians face in our country, God is keeping and protecting His Church.” – Pastor from Azerbaijan.
Despite restrictions on the church in Azerbaijan, this pastor is seeing great growth and many people wanting to be baptised.
We support Central Asian Christians who are in prison, excluded from their family and community, and are in need of jobs. We deliver Bibles, disciple believers, and give micro-loans.
Pray for unity among the different Christian denominations within Azerbaijan.
Pray for Christians in the workforce who are disadvantaged and often overlooked because of their faith.