By Joseph DeCaro
(Worthy News) - A Kazakh court in Astana has increased the severity of the sentence given a Christian convert from Islam.
According to Barnabas Aid, Yklas Kabduakasov was arrested last August for inciting religious hatred. Three months later he was convicted and began serving a restricted freedom sentence. But after Kabduakasov appealed his conviction, he was re-arrested. During a hearing in December, the judge inexplicably changed Kabduakasov's sentence from restricted freedom to two years in a prison labor camp.
Local Christians believe the motive behind Kabduakasov's first arrest was his conversion from Islam and then sharing his new-found Christian faith with Kazakh Muslims.
In Kazakhstan, a new law passed in 2011 forbade all citizens from evangelizing.