Open Doors describes the oil-rich former Soviet republic as “the country with the most sophisticated and intelligent dictatorship”. Religious freedom is enshrined in the Constitution, but constrained by the regular tightening of policies and regulations governing religious activity. Successive rounds of re-registration have diminished the number of qualified Baptist Union congregations from ten to zero. While the government burnishes its freedom credentials before international audiences, at home its agents infiltrate church congregations. It reviews all religious publications. Mission work by foreigners is outlawed.

 

Sort By date
Filter by Tag
Category

‘Complex labyrinth of “legal” restrictions’ for religious communities in Azerbaijan

‘Complex labyrinth of “legal” restrictions’ for religious communities in Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan’s government continues to claim its “tolerance” but restrictions of freedom of religion and belief, censorship of religious literature and jail sentences for prisoners of conscience are ongoing, Forum 18 reports. According to Forum 18’s recent survey, the exercise of freedom of religion and belief in the country is impinged […]

Read More

Azerbaijan: ‘no fair trial’ for house-church leader appealing against fine

Hamid Shabanov in 2007. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)

An Azerbaijani man fined for leading a “house church” without state permission has not been treated fairly during his appeal against the fine, a local source has told World Watch Monitor. The source, who wishes to remain anonymous, said there have been “multiple violations of law and process” against Hamid […]

Read More

Azerbaijan registers Bible Society after 20 years, but will it be able to print Bibles?

Azerbaijan registers Bible Society after 20 years, but will it be able to print Bibles?

Rasim Khalilov (left), Chairman of the Bible Committee, and Pastor Elchin Pashaev, one of the founders of the new Bible Society, holding the certificate of registration.United Bible Societies   The recent registration of a Bible Society in Azerbaijan, after a 20-year fight, has brought fresh optimism to the country’s minority […]

Read More

Azerbaijani Baptists win appeal

Two Baptists in Azerbaijan’s north-eastern Zakatala district, Pastor Zaur Balaev and Hinayat Shabanova, have had fines for participating in unregistered religious meetings overturned on appeal. Related Articles:Azerbaijan: ‘no fair trial’ for house-church leader…‘There will never be peace for Nigeria’s…Persecution Watch countries: Beyond the Top 50Lives in limbo – Iraqi Christians’ […]

Read More