The death penalty for those who leave Islam is based upon the Qur’an: “They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah. But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper.” (Qur’an 4:89)
A hadith depicts Muhammad saying: “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.
This is still the position of all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence, both Sunni and Shi’ite. Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the most renowned and prominent Muslim cleric in the world, has stated: “The Muslim jurists are unanimous that apostates must be punished, yet they differ as to determining the kind of punishment to be inflicted upon them. The majority of them, including the four main schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, and Hanbali) as well as the other four schools of jurisprudence (the four Shiite schools of Az-Zaidiyyah, Al-Ithna-‘ashriyyah, Al-Ja’fariyyah, and Az-Zaheriyyah) agree that apostates must be executed.”
Qaradawi also once famously said: “If they had gotten rid of the apostasy punishment, Islam wouldn’t exist today.”
Nonetheless, there is a growing group of courageous ex-Muslims who are standing up and speaking out. One of them operates the excellent new site ex-Muslim.tv, where he collects and presents videos of ex-Muslims explaining why they left Islam despite the risks, and who speak out now for their rights and human rights in general.
Ex-Muslim.tv is an extraordinary and worthy effort, especially in our strange age in which Islam is everywhere celebrated in the establishment media, without any attention paid whatsoever to the lives destroyed by its death penalty for apostasy, its institutionalized oppression of women, its Jew-hatred, etc. Please bookmark this site and visit it often, and contribute if you can to this important effort.