Muslims demand action against those who proselytize Muslims to Christianity, and 22 Islamic non-governmental organizations call for laws banning apostasy
Muslims in Malaysia have demanded that action be taken against those who proselytize Muslims to Christianity as 22 Islamic non-governmental organizations called for laws banning apostasy.
The NGOs issued a statement stressing their commitment to “defending the faith of Muslims held in this country from … encroachment,” according to the Malaysian Insider and Malaysiakini. The NGOs sought to uphold existing legislation against proselytizing Muslims while calling for stronger laws against conversions.
“We stressed that matters relating to the faith of Muslims are very sensitive issues that could affect racial harmony, thus calling on all parties not to act against the stipulated law,” the statement said. “We unanimously resolve to safeguard the Islamic faith in this country from any form of transgression in accordance to Islam’s position as the religion of the federation and existing laws, as well as call for an anti-apostasy law.”
PAS Youth Chief Nasrudin Hassan said that all previous appeals for anti-apostasy laws were rejected in Parliament: while Islam was a “religion of discourse,” a law was needed “to curb and control those who will no longer listen to arguments”.
The call for an apostasy law came as the Selangor Islamic Religious Department submitted a preliminary report of its recent raid on a church fund-raising dinner to the Selangor chief minister; the raid at the Damansara Utama Methodist Church in Petaling Jaya followed allegations that Christians were proselytizing their Muslim guests.
Church leaders condemned the raid, stating it was done without a search warrant; other critics claimed there was no proof that proselytization was actually taking place during the dinner.
Officials denied they raided the church, rather they only inspected the premises after getting complaints that Muslims were present at the dinner.
Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim was blasted for being apologetic over the raid, while Barisan Nasional Senator Mohd Ezam Mohd Nor was criticized by his fellow politicians for threatening local media’s coverage of the raid.
Last week at a mosque in Shah Alam, Nor declared war against anyone who attacked the Islamic faith, promising he would “burn” Malaysiakini and the Malaysian Insider.However, Nor later explained on Twitter that: “Malaysiakini/Malaysian Insider are cyber news portals; No threat to burn any reporters/building. The remarks were only symbolic of the anger towards them for burning the hearts of the Muslim community.”
Malaysian Muslims decry Proselytizers
Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News, August 16, 2011
Family hands student over to the Islamic Religious Affairs Department after he admits conversion to Christianity. Student repents and Court orders him to surrender passport, attend mosque, and report to its imam for 6 months
KOTA BARU – A MUSLIM student who had earlier claimed that he had converted to Christianity, told the Syariah High Court here that he had repented and returned to Islam.
With that plea, judge Abu Bakar Abdullah Kutty ordered Mohamad Fariz Ilham Mohd Zulkifli to join the congregation for prayers at the varsity’s mosque.
The culinary art student has to report to its imam for six months effective Monday.
Mr Bakar also ordered the 19-year-old to report to the Dungun Islamic Religious Office weekly and surrender his passport to the court.
On April 24, Mohamad Fariz’s family referred him to the Kelantan Islamic Religious Affairs Depart-ment after he admitted to have committed apostasy and converted to Christianity. The Syariah High Court then issued a one-week remand order on him.
‘Converted’ student returns to Islam
Straits Times, May 3, 2011
Convert to Christianity is arrested, stripped naked and forced to enact the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Tortured and physically assaulted, he passed blood in his urine and was not allowed sleep for days at a stretch
Jamaluddin Othman @Yeshua Jamaluddin, a Malay who converted to Christianity and subsequently became Pastor of the Fellowship of Indigenous Christians in Selangor, arrested on 27 Oct 1987
His interrogators stripped him naked and forced him to enact the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. As he was made to crawl naked on the floor, for 10 minutes, one Inspector Yusoff told several other Special Branch officers in the room, “Ini orang Melayu tak sedar diri.”
He was not allowed sleep for days at a stretch and was warned that he would not be fed unless he co-operated. The same Inspector Yusoff also threatened to “disturb” his girlfriend if he did not divulge the information they demanded. Inspector Yusoff and two other Inspectors, Zainudding and Ayub, assaulted him on several occasions, causing him to injure his back and pass out blood in his urine.
At one stage of interrogation, he was made to stand for two hours on one leg with both arms outstretched holding his slippers. A woman constable and her young daughter were brought in to watch him while a police constable said, “Ini Melayu tak sedar diri, tukar agama, tak malu.”
Jamaluddin was also coerced to convert back to Islam.“I got the clear impression that all my interviews with the Special Branch was for the purpose of getting me to change my religion from Christianity to Islam,” he told the Supreme Court.
Abuse of Power Under the ISA
P Ramakrishnan, Aliran Monthly, 2001
Ex-Muslim attempts to make her conversion to Christianity officially recognised to retain the right to raise children. Goes into hiding after she and her legal advisor are threatened with death
Lina Joy wants to marry a Christian man and start a family, but while she converted from Islam in 1990 and was baptized several years later, the government maintains her religious designation as Muslim on her identity card.
That’s significant because if she does marry and have children, they could be taken from her under the Islamic religious law which does not allow parents who are “apostate,” or in defiance of God, to raise children.
So she is asking the Malaysian government to stop classifying her a Muslim. She says the government has no right to tell her what she should believe.
Malkin noted that even Joy’s legal advisor, Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, has faced death threats because of his defense of her case.
. . .
A previous court opinion in her case said as long as she is ethnic Malay, she is Muslim, even though the civil constitution in Malaysia guarantees freedom of religion. The court’s opinion said that was not freedom of “choice” but a freedom to practice Islam.
A number of groups working with persecuted Christians around the world have noted the loss of right to marry, the loss of the right to work, illegal imprisonment and even torture of Christians, especially those who choose to leave Islam.
. . .
“If Islam were to grant permission for Muslims to change religion at will, it would imply it has no dignity, no self-esteem,” said Wan Azhar Wan Ahmad, of Malaysia’s Institute of Islamic Understanding. “And then people may question its completeness, truthfulness and perfection,” he said.
Christian convert faces death threats
WorldNetDaily, August 26, 2006Finally, on April 13, the Federal Court granted Joy permission to appeal the government’s decision. The court said there were “novel issues” to be argued in the case and that the matter was of public interest. When the case returned to court on June 28, it sparked heated debate in the Malaysian press. Joy and her lawyer received death threats, eventually prompting Joy to go into hiding.
Malaysian Convert Receives Death Threats, Goes into Hiding
Compass Direct, August 25
Former Muslims being taken to “re-education” centers to be forced back to Islam
CBN News traveled to Malaysia — a country that presents itself as a model for Islamic moderation, yet has many former Muslims who say they are persecuted after finding Christ.
A two-hour journey from the capital city of Kuala Lumpur revealed an isolated encampment where some Christian converts say they’ve been taken to be forced back to Islam.
The Malaysian government calls the facilities “retreat centers.” Muslims willingly come there to strengthen their faith.
CBN News spoke to one Christian, who asked to remain anonymous, in fear he would be taken back to what others have called “faith purification” facilities.
“They were clearly angry and they wanted to kill me, but they did not harm me physically,” he recalled. “I know of many others. They force you to recite Islamic prayers and the Koran, to do all the things you’re suppose to do as a Muslim.””They’re trying to force us to believe what we can’t believe,” the man continued. “These re-education centers come from the power of darkness.”
Malay Christians Face ‘Faith Purification’ Centers
Gary Lane, CBN News, December 12, 2010
Malaysian agency vows to enforce apostasy law due to “scores of Muslim converts” leaving Islam
The Sabah Islamic Affairs Department (Jheains) will enforce the apostasy law once its faith rehabilitation centre in Kinarut is ready next year, said its director, Datuk Amri A.Suratman.
He said enforcement of the law was part of Jheains’ five-year strategic plan.
Until the rehabilitation centre is ready in June, offenders will be enlightened on the merits of returning into the path of Islam, he told Bernama after closing the Jheains Senior Officers Conference here Friday night.
The conference, among others, touched on scores of Muslim converts, who reverted to their original religions, due to neglect from Islamic religious agencies and non-governmental organisations.
Amri said imams should provide information and counselling to Muslims, especially the younger generation, in their areas to ensure that they understand the syariah law.
On dakwah, he said Jheains would focus its efforts on strategic and rural areas, especially those with a high number of converts, especially on prayers.”These efforts will be carried out continuously to ensure that Muslim converts are not neglected,” he added.
Jheains To Enforce Apostasy Law
Bernama, December 25, 2010