On March 1, 2015, parliamentary elections were held in Tajikistan. Soon after the elections, which were, of course, won by the supporters of President Emomali Rahmon, a change occurred in the country. More and more restrictive legislation was imposed – including on matters of religion. Persecution and pressure on Christians has been markedly higher than last year, including a slight increase in violence. It suggests the regime is increasingly exercising its power. Persecution is strongest in the private, national and church spheres. This is typical for a situation in which dictatorial paranoia is the leading persecution engine. Pressure from Islamic extremism is present mostly in the private, family and community spheres and is exerted by the social environment, while dictatorial paranoia – pressure from the regime – is felt mostly in the private, national and church spheres.
As Sister Sitora recovers from the brutal beating that followed her decision follow Jesus, she is under the home rule of her brother who is trying to force her return to Islam.