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New legislation hurts work in Beslan, as terrorist video is released

By August 2, 2007

Russia (MNN) — A video that has emerged nearly three years after the Beslan school hostage crisis may change conclusions about what happened in the tragedy that took the lives of 334 people. The video appears to support a theory that Russian security forces may have caused the initial explosion on September 3, 2004 as more than 1,000 people were held hostage in Russia worst terrorist attack in the country's history.

Russian Ministries were one of the first organizations on the scene to help provide counseling during that time. Russian Ministries' Michael Minyazev says that work continues. "It is still continuing in the Russian Ministries youth and training center in Beslan."

Even though the terrorists came from nearby Chechnya, Christians taking the Gospel to that area, which Minyazev says is difficult. "The people are afraid to go out on the streets in the night time. There's still shooting there. I would say it's not safe at all. The young Christians from Northern Ossetia they are really risking their lives," says Minyazev.

They're holding summer camp ministry in Chechnya in an area where the population is 99-percent Muslim, and radically Muslim. Minyazev says despite this, many have responded to the Gospel. "The church is growing [and so are] new types of ministries, like the ministry for the youth. The youth center in Beslan is really popular amongst the population. People are responding. People come to Christ. People come to the church."

Minyazev says however, anti-extremist legislation could hurt their work. "It can be considered extremist if it causes any conflict in the society. And, preaching the Gospel always causes the conflict amongst the people who are not Christians. I think this legislation really limits the rights of the Christians."

He says, "Christians can not stop preaching the Gospel with any legislation, but it limits the rights of the churches. It limits the rights of the Christian organizations and Christian organizations find themselves in a very difficult situation."

Prayer and financial support are needed to help Russian Ministries continue their work in this region. Click here to donate to Russian Ministries.

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