08/05/2016, 09.29
RUSSIA
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Karelia, Jehovah's Witnesses abused over "extremist" literature

The faithful of the two communities, Petrozavodsk and Kostomuksha were assaulted, thrown to the ground, beaten. According to the faithful the incriminated material was "planted" by police to close down community.

Moscow (AsiaNews / NRN) - Two community of Jehovah's Witnesses in Karelia were raided by police and beaten because "found in possession" of "extremist" publications.

The incident occurred on July 28, but the interior ministry confirmed it just two days ago, reporting on its website that a search that led to the "discovery of extremist documents".

According to the Jehovah's Witnesses, however, the raid was violent and involved the police, together with public safety officials in two cities of Karelia, Petrozavodsk and Kostomuksha. The police intervened during the prayer service and having seized celphones, they threw those present on the ground, immobilized them with their knees, and began beating and stamping on them. After verification of the documents, during the night, the faithful were left to go. But in both communities "extremist" publications were discovered. According to the Jehovah's Witnesses, they were "planted" by the police. The material discovered gives police a basis for an investigation and to close the community.

Among the religious minorities present on the territory of the former USSR, the JWs are among the most oppressed. Present with about 200 thousand people, scattered throughout the Russian Federation, they are accused of sectarianism, "religious extremism", "incitement to social isolation" and behaviors that undermine the harmony of society.

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