Introduction / History What happens when an entire people group gets a reputation for committing acts of terrorism? The Chechens in both Russia and France have been labeled terrorists. In Russia, where separatists have waged an ongoing war against the Russian government, Chechens are infamous for their acts of terrorism that often victimize innocent people.
There have been two major wars between the Russian military and the Chechens since 1990, and many Chechens have left for safer lands such as France. The Russian military demolished Grozny, the capital of Chechnya, and at one time Chechen terrorists attacked people in a Russian theater.
In the early 2000s, some Chechens began to flee to France. They are often suspected of being terrorists in that country that has suffered from a number of attacks. The Chechens are an unwelcome minority in France.
Where are they located? Chechens in France are settled in Nice (the largest community), Strasbourg, Paris, Orleans, Le Mans, Besançon, Montpellier, Toulouse, and Tours.
What are their lives like? A non-government organization (NGO) has developed in Paris to assist Chechen students, primarily those from Grozny. From students to workers, most Chechen refugees have shown they are determined and will work hard to succeed in France.
What are their beliefs? Chechens are solidly Sunni Muslim. They cannot imagine following another religious system. Pray that some of them in France will become so tired of war and terrorism that they will embrace the Prince of Peace.
What are their needs? The Chechens need a safe place to raise their families, educate their children, and earn a living. Those who have fled to France have the potential for this, but they will need to become fluent in French and develop job skills.
Prayer Points * Pray that followers of Christ in France will develop lasting friendships with Chechens, many of whom feel lonely.
* Pray that Chechens will receive the hope and comfort only found in the Lord.
* Pray that Chechens will become strong believers who lead many of their people to the Lord.
* Pray for the Chechens in France to form Christ-centered fellowships that will spread to Russia.