Urgent: An Uzbek Christian Needs Your Help!
A Message from The Open Doors Advocacy Department:
Makhset Djabbarbergenov is a Christian from Uzbekistan who urgently needs your help!
Makhset is a former Uzbek house church pastor from the capital of Karakalpakstan, the autonomous republic of Uzbekistan. No Protestant churches in Karakalpakstan have recieved official registration, so they are considered illegal.
Makhset has been brought into court six times. Police raided the family’s apartment in August 2007, prompting the family to flee. The Djabbarbergenov’s eventually arrived in Kazakhstan where they initiated the process of seeking asylum through the United Nations. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees determined the family to be refugees who would face prosecution in Uzbekistan because of their Christian faith.
Unfortunately, the Kazakh government disagreed and has ruled against Makhset at several turns. His case now rests before the country’s highest court, which has yet to set a date for his extradition hearing.
Kazakh authorities arrested Makhset on September 2, and are holding him in Almaty’s investigation prison. Prosecutors have also moved ahead in response to Uzbekistan’s request to return him to face charges.
That’s why we are asking our supporters to urgently send a message to the Kazakh Ambassador to the United States, asking that the Kazakh government not forcibly return Makhset to Uzbekistan!
Uzbekistan wants Makhset repatriated to face charges that he practiced religion outside of state regulations. The two charges awaiting him in Uzbekistan each carry a maximum penalty of three years in prison.
Makhset is married to Aigul who is currently expecting their fifth child. Please join us in praying for God’s intervention in this situation the Djabbarbergenov family is facing! We also ask that you forward this campaign to your friends and family as we need to spread awareness and action as quickly as possible.