Urgent Report of Afghanistan Apostasy Trial
The Center for Islamic Pluralism opposes interpretations of Islamic law that criminalize an individual's change in religion, including the adoption of Christianity or another religion by Muslims. This issue has gained wide publicity because of reports that a court in Afghanistan may charge a man with apostasy, under a possible death sentence, for becoming a Christian.
The Center for Islamic Pluralism calls on the political and religious leadership in Afghanistan to exercise mercy and compassion in this case and to prevent any civil or sharia proceeding from being instituted against the individual in question.
At the same time, the Center for Islamic Pluralism affirms that Afghanistan is not a leading example of Islamic social development at this time. It is an impoverished and devastated country. Events transpiring there should not be taken by non-Muslims as representative of Islam as a whole or as evidence regarding the wisdom of U.S. policies in the Islamic world.
Further, the Center for Islamic Pluralism does not consider departure from Islam as a faith to be a solution to the problems of the Islamic world, or the world in general.
The Center finally affirms that issues of religious choice in many Muslim societies are extremely complex and will not be resolved easily. The aim of restoring Muslim pluralism is to encourage an extensive, authoritative, and serious debate on these issues.
Kemal Silay, President