Muhammad said: "Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him" (Bukhari 9.84.57). The death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law according to all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence. Yet Muslim spokesmen such as Harris Zafar, Mustafa Akyol, Salam al-Marayati, M. Cherif Bassiouni, and Ali Eteraz (among many others) have assured us that Islam doesn't punish apostasy. I expect that Zafar, Akyol, al-Marayati, Bassiouni, and Eteraz will immediately be jetting over to Jakarta to explain to Prof. Dr. Ali Mustafa Yaqub, Chief Imam of Istiqlal Mosque, that he is getting Islam all wrong, wrong, wrong.
JAKARTA: Muslims who said that Muslims are free to choose their religion are misguided and need to repent and ask for forgiveness from Allah, said Chief Imam of Istiqlal Mosque here, Prof Dr Ali Mustafa Yaqub.
“They (Muslims) who said this admitted the truth of other religions and had gone astray. Those who said that all religions are equal, can join and leave as they please, can become infidels,” he told reporters here.
Ali Mustafa, a famous Indonesian scholar and hadith expert was commenting on remarks by Lembah Pantai Member of Parliament Nurul Izzah Anwar who quoted a verse form the Quran which means “There is no compulsion in religion” and linked to views on religious freedom for the Malays in Malaysia.
In Malaysia, the Malays are Muslims.
“The verse which means “There is no compulsion in religion” is only directed to non-Muslims as they are not forced to convert to Islam but when they choose to embrace Islam, they must comply with the rules set out by Islam.
Ali Mustafa said those who subscribe to liberal thinking may be reluctant to accept it because it seemed like not supporting freedom of rights.
“Islam does not ask you to embrace it. You can choose to become infidels as it is your right but if you embrace it, follow the rules of Islam. If you embrace Islam but still follow unIslamic rules, then things will go haywire.”
He said although Muslims in Malaysia are not as many as in Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim community, Muslims in Malaysia remain as Muslims, especially the Malays.
On another note, Ali Mustafa said Islam forbid Muslims from praying for the destruction of fellow Muslims.
The chief imam said Prophet Muhammad did not pray for the destruction of non-Muslims, what more fellow Muslims....
Muhammad didn't pray for the destruction of non-Muslims? The poet Abu Mayt mocked Muhammad in verse and threw intestines on his back while he was praying. In response, Muhammad prayed: "O Allah! Destroy (the pagans of) Quraish [major tribe in Mecca]; O Allah! Destroy Quraish; O Allah Destroy Quraish..." (Bukhari 4.52.185). He went on to ask for the destruction of several individuals, including Abu Mayt, whom he later had executed.