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April 29 2013

surveyork
17:39

It’s support they very much need, Abdallah said, because Muslims who abandon their faith face challenges not faced by those who leave other religions. Divorce and disowning are common, as is the threat of physical violence. Some more conservative Muslims believe Islam sanctions the killing of apostates (those who abandon the faith) and blasphemers (those who belittle Islam, the Prophet Muhammad or other Muslims).

The argument for the death penalty is usually based on a section of the hadith, the collected sayings of Muhammad. One hadith states, “The Prophet said: whoever discards his religion, kill him.” But some Islamic scholars vehemently disagree, and point to the Quran itself, which says, “For you is your religion, and for me is my religion.”

There are currently eight countries that punish apostasy with the death penalty, including Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan and Iran. And while the U.S. protects freedom of conscience and religion, some Muslims who emigrate from countries with no similar guarantees discriminate against, or seek to punish, the atheists in their communities.

SIDEBAR: Muslims embracing unbelief often face a lonely journey - The Washington Post

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