Please pray for Christians in (post)communist Central Asia. They live in terror every day of their life.
Islamic extremism in Central Asia and the Caucasus will further increase in the next few years, predicts a new report by Anna Münster, a Fellow of the Russia and Eurasia Programme at Chatham House.
US withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2014, and expected regime changes in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan threaten to destabilise the region, providing radicals with a platform from which to operate, claims Growing Islamic Extremism in Central Asia and the Caucasus – Situation and Outlook.
The notion of Islam growing as a response to disillusionment is referenced several times, as is the existence of solidarity between Muslims in Central Asia and the Caucasus who feel victimised by the West and believe themselves to be subjected to a “grand conspiracy against the Muslim world”.
Perhaps most notably, Münster highlights a deliberate “closing of the eyes” to human rights abuses in Uzbekistan, where Western governments have vested interests. Here, Munster says Islamists have been subjected to brutality and torture in prisons – “even those who never engaged in violent actions and were [incarcerated] simply for possessing a Hizb ut-Tahrir leaflet”.
Torture is often “systematic” and “deeply disturbing”, she writes, while the “extension of government control over life, including religious life, has been reminiscent of Soviet times, though the use of new technologies and events of the Arab Spring may present a stark warning to today’s repressive governments”. Continue reading “World Watch Monitor – The Rise of Islamic Extremism in Central Asia and the Caucasus”