A spokesman for the Jehovah’s Witnesses has said that Russian investigators have brutally tortured adherents of the group who are currently held in detention.

Russia’s Supreme Court declared the Jehovah’s Witnesses an extremist organization in 2017, leading to mass raids and causing hundreds of its estimated 175,000 members to flee the country. Earlier this month, a court in the city of Oryol convicted Dennis Christensen, a Danish Jehovah’s Witness, of extremism and sentenced him to six years behind bars, in a case that rights groups warned may trigger a crackdown on religious minorities.

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