Posted by: becketfund | July 26, 2007

Turkmenistan: Conscientious Objector to Stand Trial

July 26 Mary, Turkmenistan Forum 18 reports that Suleiman Udaev, a Jehovah’s Witness, will stand trial August 3 for his refusal to participate in Turkmenistan’s compulsory military service, due to his religious beliefs. Udaev is accused of “evading military service” in violation of Article 219, Part I of Turkmenistan’s Criminal Code, which mandates up to two years of imprisonment for violations. Up to ten other Jehovah’s Witnesses are thought to be in danger of facing similar charges; during the past two weeks three other Jehovah’s Witnesses have been convicted of the same charge and received punishments of one- to two-year suspended sentences.

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