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View Full Version : IRAN: ‘Apostasy’ bill appears likely to become law


Sam L
Sep 25th, 2008, 11:06 AM
International pressure sought against mandatory death penalty for ‘apostates.’

LOS ANGELES, September 23 (Compass Direct News) – Without international pressure there is little to stop the Iranian government from ratifying a bill that will make “apostasy,” or leaving Islam, a capital crime, say human rights groups and experts.

On Sept. 9 the Iranian parliament approved a new penal code by a vote of 196-7 calling for a mandatory death sentence for apostates, or those who leave Islam. The Christian and Baha’i communities of Iran are most likely to be affected by this decision.

“Unless there is a coordinated and very strong effort from the international community to place pressure on Iran for this, I don’t think there will be anything stopping the Iranian government from passing this legislation,” Joseph Grieboski, founder of the Institute on Religion and Public Policy, told Compass.

The bill still has to make its way through Iran’s policy-making process before it becomes law. Parliament is reviewing it article by article, after which it will be sent to Iran’s most influential body, the Guardian Council, which will rule on it.

The council is made up of six conservative theologians appointed by Iran’s Supreme Leader and six jurists nominated by the judiciary and approved by parliament. This body has the power to veto any bill it deems inconsistent with the constitution and Islamic law.

In the case of the new penal code, however, which appears to be a return to a strict adherence of sharia (Islamic law), sources said they do not expect the Guardian Council to reject the penal code.

The timing of the debate on the penal code is not coincidental, said Grieboski. While the international community is focused on Iran’s nuclear activities, he said, the Iranian government appears to be taunting the West with deliberate human rights violations.

“Because of the nuclear issues, ones like these get put on the backburner, which means that the regime can move with great liberty to install legislation like this with impunity, because the nuclear issue gives them cover,” said Grieboski.

Iran has been criticized for its treatment of Baha’is, Zoroastrians and Christians, who have all suffered under the current regime.

“The Baha’is and the Christians are the ones being used as pawns by the regime in its dance with the West,” said Grieboski. “Iran is a human rights black hole in the middle of the world.”

A source told Compass that when he discussed the apostasy article in the penal code with some of the reformists in Iran’s parliament, they responded by saying they were not aware of the apostasy bill. The source argued that the Iranian government was trying to bury the apostasy article in the 113-page penal code.

“I am not sure there is an adequate means of underscoring how serious this law is in terms of violation of international law and a violation of the fundamental freedom of religion or belief,” said Kit Bigelow of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of the United States.

She urged people to write their representatives in their respective governments.

International pressure is crucial if the apostasy bill is to be countered, agreed a Christian source. He recalled how in 2005 Christian convert Hamid Pourmand was acquitted of apostasy as a direct result of international pressure.

“I don’t know who you are, but apparently the rest of the world does,” the presiding judge had told Pourmand, according to media sources. “You must be an important person, because many people from government have called me, saying to cancel your case.”

The news of parliament approving the bill comes on the heels of two Christians being officially charged with apostasy this summer. Mahmood Matin Azad, 52, and Arash Basirat, 44, have been in prison since May 15 and now await their court date.

Although their future and that of other non-Muslims looks grim, some believe this bill is the act of a government desperately trying to hang onto power.

“I have to say the Iranian regime is tightening severely its control over as many aspects of the lives of Iranian people as they possibly can,” said Grieboski. “And that, I think, is the sign of a weakening regime.”

The original penal code was passed into law in 1991 and last amended in 1996.

END



Source: http://compassdirect.org/en/display.php?page=news&lang=en&length=long&idelement=5599

Free Iran! Free the Iranian people. :help:

Scotso
Sep 25th, 2008, 12:34 PM
Not surprising, they've been massacring Baha'is and homosexuals for decades.

One of my friend's mother is an Iranian Baha'i, and several of her family members were executed there simply for their religious beliefs.

Yet still, liberals seem to defend Iran and act like the attacks on it are some sort of Jewish conspiracy.

Hazel
Sep 25th, 2008, 01:58 PM
... said Grieboski. “And that, I think, is the sign of a weakening regime.”

I HOPE that is true. But unfortunately I fear that like most weakening regimes they will try and take their people down with them.

kwilliams
Sep 25th, 2008, 02:55 PM
I could never have even dreamed up such a law! Imagine capital punishment just for leaving a religion. I really hope they succumb to international pressure and drop this awful move.

Richard_from_Cal
Sep 25th, 2008, 03:31 PM
I could never have even dreamed up such a law! Imagine capital punishment just for leaving a religion. I really hope they succumb to international pressure and drop this awful move.

Sadly, from what little I've read, that's typical of Islam...and how it spreads by the sword.

Hilaire Beloc wrote a lengthy essay, on Islam, from a Catholic's viewpoint. Called it a heresy. Still, they're the childen of the blessing...Abraham's seed...our brothers, who believe in the one God. [For those of us who believe.--]

It is faith that saves. :shrug:

Philbo
Sep 25th, 2008, 05:00 PM
Not surprising, they've been massacring Baha'is and homosexuals for decades.

One of my friend's mother is an Iranian Baha'i, and several of her family members were executed there simply for their religious beliefs.

Yet still, liberals seem to defend Iran and act like the attacks on it are some sort of Jewish conspiracy.

The thing that makes me take Sam L's attacks on Iran with a grain of salt, are not because I support Iran as such, its moreso because of the fact that this kind of religious intolerance (for example) is seen throughout the muslim world, and IMO, the BIGGEST problematic muslim country for international relations are the Saudi's.

How much freedom do homosexuals have in Saudi Arabia? We get hung there too...

So why is Sam L so vocal about Iran's shameful laws and practices etc, but utterly silent when it comes to the Saudi's? The Saudi's are the ones who finance the belligerent form of Islam throughout the world... Why arent they subject to as much scorn from posters like Sam L?
Is it because they arent as vocal about their hatred of Israel?
Is it because they are seen as an 'ally' of the USA?

I dont know, but until I see posters (Sam L and whoever else) be as critical of countries like Saudi Arabia as they are about Iran, ill take it with a grain of salt...

Richard_from_Cal
Sep 27th, 2008, 10:11 PM
I dont know, but until I see posters (Sam L and whoever else) be as critical of countries like Saudi Arabia as they are about Iran, ill take it with a grain of salt...
I can't wait to be concerned.

I saw, recently, that there were a surprising amount of Jews in Iran. I'd read Every Spy a Prince, by Dan Raviv and Yossi Melman, and knew about the repatriation of Jews to Israel, in the earlier days of modern Israel...and as a latter-day Catholic, I'm becoming more aware of Catholics in Iran.

vv--from wikipedia--link (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christians_in_Iran)--vv
All statistical information is from church-based sources [1] and reflects the situation in the year 2000 (Christians formed 0.2% of the total Iranian population in 2000).

Using C.I.A. World Fact Book figures for 2008:Population:
65,875,224 (July 2008 est.)

.2% of 65,875,224 = 131,750 people

using world-gazeteer.com figures (estimates of 65,540,224 people in 2002, and 61,839,435 people in 1998 [official censuses in 1996 and 2006, I won't go there...] I get an approximate guesstimate of 63,689,829. Which would still equal 127,380 people.


=============================
.65,540,224--2002
.61,839,435--1998
=================
127,379,659 -- summed figure....(*0.5 = 63,689,829 -- interpolated figure for 2000)


(Granted, it's a far cry from what we in the U.S. abort each year...)

égalité
Sep 27th, 2008, 10:40 PM
:help:

Martian Jeza
Sep 27th, 2008, 11:35 PM
Off-Topic : Sam, who's that :hearts: :hearts: :hearts: :hearts: girl in your avatar ?

Malva
Sep 28th, 2008, 12:13 AM
Sadly, from what little I've read, that's typical of Islam...and how it spreads by the sword.


The thing that makes me take Sam L's attacks on Iran with a grain of salt, are not because I support Iran as such, its moreso because of the fact that this kind of religious intolerance (for example) is seen throughout the muslim world, and IMO, the BIGGEST problematic muslim country for international relations are the Saudi's.

How much freedom do homosexuals have in Saudi Arabia? We get hung there too...

So why is Sam L so vocal about Iran's shameful laws and practices etc, but utterly silent when it comes to the Saudi's? The Saudi's are the ones who finance the belligerent form of Islam throughout the world... Why arent they subject to as much scorn from posters like Sam L?
Is it because they arent as vocal about their hatred of Israel?
Is it because they are seen as an 'ally' of the USA?

I dont know, but until I see posters (Sam L and whoever else) be as critical of countries like Saudi Arabia as they are about Iran, ill take it with a grain of salt...

Killing a muslim who embraces another religion is indeed one of the basic precepts of Islam. In other muslim countries this law is often executed by the family members of the person who does that. The state doesn't even need to be concerned. This is regulated in the same way in muslim communities in Europe. There were reported cases in Great Britain where the family members were suspected of killing their keen for becoming Christian. And how many such cases are never reported? Out of Political Correctness. Out of fear. Out of cowardice of media people.

So, in one word, it's a standard procedure in the muslim world, even if it is the first time you hear about it. You don't hear more because of the cowardice of Western media.

Re. Chechfan's remarks about homosexuality and Islam, he would be obviously surprised at the extent homosexuality has been present and tolerated in many muslim communities. He is probably concerned with the fact that gay parades are not allowed in places like Mecca or Medina.

Richard_from_Cal
Sep 28th, 2008, 01:43 AM
On the one hand, I might like to visit Iran: birthplace of Omar Khayyam. Commiserate with my fellow Catholics.--

I see there are many more Synagogues in Iran than I had ever imagined. If things are getting worse, as a presumed Buddhist I met years ago thought (he imagined the next World War would be about Iran,) then there's no time like the present.


Whoa! Tehran = Rhages?

I'm working my little project, and I see "name variants."
Tehrān = Teheran, Tehran, Shemiranat, Tajrīsh, Rey, Rai, Rhagae, Ragae, Rhages, Rages, Europus, Shahr-el-Rey, Rei

You know, Rages is mentioned in one of my favorite books of the Bible: Tobit, I think.

wta_zuperfann
Sep 28th, 2008, 02:26 AM
"Free Iran! Free the Iranian people."


Uh, you forgot that the Ahmadinejad government was democratically elected.

Remember when Republican 'hero' Bush said Iraq needed to be invaded in order to insure that it had democracy? Well, Iran already has democracy and does not any further "freedom".

While it is true that they do not believe in disestablishment [neither do the Saudis or Israelis] as we Yanks do, I'll leave it up to them to determine what is proper.

Scotso
Sep 28th, 2008, 03:06 AM
"Free Iran! Free the Iranian people."

Uh, you forgot that the Ahmadinejad government was democratically elected.

So what you're saying is that the majority of Iranians are fundamentalist Muslim nutjobs who have no problem executing people merely for not being a fundamentalist Muslim nutjob?

Sam L
Sep 28th, 2008, 02:07 PM
Off-Topic : Sam, who's that :hearts: :hearts: :hearts: :hearts: girl in your avatar ?
It's Natalie Portman!! - my future wife. :hearts:

slavicpower
Sep 28th, 2008, 03:59 PM
and how about Saudi Arabia. It's laws are much more conservative than those of Iran yet its never mentioned??

saint2
Sep 28th, 2008, 04:06 PM
Uh, you forgot that the Ahmadinejad government was democratically elected.

Is "he was democratically elected" some mantra of lefts ? Bush also was...


It's Natalie Portman!! - my future wife.

Warning! Sam is having delirium again...