More evidence that the penalty for apostasy in Islamic law is indeed death, contrary to the claims of blandly smiling Islamic spokesmen in the West. Those blandly smiling apologists could inspire much more confidence in non-Muslims if they acknowledged such teachings and rejected them, rather than simply denying their existence and thereby preying upon the ignorant.
"Top Saudi cleric calls for writers' deaths," from Reuters (thanks to all who sent this in):
RIYADH, March 15 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's most revered cleric said in a rare fatwa this week that two writers should be tried for apostasy for their "heretical articles" and put to death if they do not repent.
Sheikh Abdul-Rahman al-Barrak was responding to recent articles in al-Riyadh newspaper that questioned the Sunni Muslim view in Saudi Arabia that adherents of other faiths should be considered unbelievers.
"Anyone who claims this has refuted Islam and should be tried in order to take it back. If not, he should be killed as an apostate from the religion of Islam," said the fatwa, or religious opinion, dated March 14 and published on Barrak's Web site.
"It is disgraceful that articles containing this kind of apostasy should be published in some papers of Saudi Arabia, the land of the two holy shrines," he said, referring to Muslim holy places in Mecca and Medina.
"The rulers should hold these papers to account ... and all those who took part in the publication should know they were involved in the sin of heretical articles."
Barrak, who is thought to be around 75, is viewed by Islamists as the leading independent authority of Saudi Arabia's hardline version of Sunni Islam, often termed Wahhabism.
He said the articles suggested Muslims were free to follow other religions....