On September 26, 2018, the Supreme Court of the “Donetsk People’s Republic” (DPR) declared the religious association of Jehovah’s Witnesses to be “extremist,” effectively banning our activities. Neither the general prosecutor, who initiated the claim against our legal entity, nor the Court consulted with any of the Jehovah’s Witnesses during the proceedings. The banning is the latest development in an escalating pattern of religious oppression against Jehovah’s Witnesses in the region.
The situation of our brothers in certain territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, in eastern Ukraine, has deteriorated since the DPR Supreme Court declared some of our publications to be “extremist” in mid-2017. During that year, police interrogated over 170 Witnesses. Authorities in the regions have also systematically seized Kingdom Halls. As of August 29, 2018, a total of 16 Kingdom Halls have been confiscated.
Despite these attacks on their worship, our brothers and sisters in these territories are continuing to rely on the ‘God of salvation.’—Psalm 18:46.