Story number 1 for 9 Aug 2001

By August 9, 2001

(Turkmenistan)–Our newscast begins today in Turkmenistan, a neighboring Islamic country to Afghanistan. The recent arrest of a group of Christian aid workers there has brought to light the persecution of believers in Central Asia. Back to the Bible’s Mark Blowers says the possibility of increased oppression against their Turkmen workers is real, however: “Turkmenistan has been kind of on the cutting edge of some of the persecution of Christians already in the Central Asian region. Afghanistan, I think, probably has got more headlines, but Turkmenistan has been persecuting the 500-plus believers there for some time already.” Blowers says shortly before they went on the air, they had confirmed reports of beatings, arsons, and vandalism. He asks people to pray for the Christians under fire, adding that the struggling church needs the support. “I don’t think that we’re anticipating anything worse. It’s just going to be more of the same, and that’s where our programs come in–is to encourage that little remnant there in their faith.”

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