On Thursday, at a session of the Supreme Court, a Ministry of Justice (Minyust RF) official said (providing documentary evidence):
Checks found that the organisation is in breach of the law on resistance to extremism. In particular, their religious literature forbids blood transfusion for its members in defiance of a doctor’s recommendation. The Jehovah’s Witnesses insist on their own exclusiveness, which also contradicts the law on resistance to extremist activity. Courts of law repeatedly warned the Jehovah’s Witnesses, but it took none of the required measures to eliminate the violations.
Minyust RF Demands Outlawing Jehovah’s Witnesses
The Minyust RF believes that we must outlaw the Jehovah’s Witnesses and confiscate its properties, including that of all 395 regional chapters. The Minyust RF representative said:
In view of the threat posed by the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Minyust RF asks [the court] to declare it extremist and ban its activity.
In its lawsuit, the Minyust RF mentioned a variety of violations, including those of the federal law on resistance to extremist activities. Jehovah’s Witnesses spokesman Ivan Bilenko told us:
We find this affair very worrisome, because the decision may affect 175,000 believers. We’re prepared to press for our rights in any court.
On 12 October 2016, a court in Moscow warned the Jehovah’s Witnesses Administrative Centre about extremist activities. If they failed to eliminate the exposed violations within the established deadlines, or if new evidence of extremist activities surfaced, the court would close them down. On 16 January 2017, the Moscow City Court upheld the warning about extremist activities.
6 April 2017