Kuwait Votes to Murder Blasphemers

This would qualify as a Monty Python skit if it wasn’t real. (Warning: Fairly shocking pic below the fold.)

Kuwait’s parliament approved a law that calls for the death penalty for insulting the Prophet Muhammad, his wives and relatives, in a sign of the growing sway of Islamists who triumphed in elections this year.

Amnesty International describes the thing as “a massive step backwards” for Kuwait.  Jeez, you think?

Under the law, any Muslim who, through any form of expression, insults God, his prophets, messengers, Prophet Mohammad’s wives or the Qur’an will be subject to the death penalty unless the defendant repents. If he does, then the judge is to instead impose a sentence of at least 5 years in prison and a fine equivalent to $36,000 (US). 

This is the second approval of the measure, and it will now go to the emir for approval, and then to official publication, after which it will be the law.

The stories I could find don’t provide a lot of detail as to what sorts of things will be considered insults, or whether they even have to happen within Kuwait. They do all specify that the main target of the law appears to be Muslims. Islam: Once you’re in, you’re IN.

For non-Muslims, equivalent acts would bring a jail sentence of “no more than” 10 years. Guess I’ll avoid those fun-loving vacations in sunny Kuwait for a while.

Via Bloomberg: “Islam is a religion of tolerance, peace and acceptance, but that doesn’t mean it should be stepped on,” lawmaker Ali al-Deqbasi told the house before the vote.

Ha-ha. Yeah. “Offensive” free speech brings state-sanctioned murder. You go, Kuwait, you modern nation.

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About Hank Fox
  • sqlrob

    Sorry Ali al-Deqbasi, this attempted law says EXACTLY why it should be stepped on.

    I wish we’d cut off aid / stop trading with any country with an anti-blasphemy law (enforced or not), but it’ll never happen.

  • sumdum

    The Netherlands also has an anti-blasphemy law, although it has not been enforced in decades. I wish they’d abolish it already.

  • Zengaze

    Logically you would think that this law could never be enforced. As the simple defence would be to state “I am not a Muslim, I don’t believe the tenets of Islam so therefore I cannot be a Muslim”

    But it seems to me that this law in all likelihood is an attack on apostasy, to silence dissension and atheism, as it follows that to say, Allah doesn’t exist, so therefore mo couldn’t be his prophet is blasphemy!

    The UN needs to step up on this one.

  • Rucker Asimov

    That’s another reason why I should leave Kuwait in the first moment I have the chance to.

    I thought Kuwait will be more liberal and free in the future, but that dream evaporated.

    It’s no place for a liberal leftist artist like me here. Goddamn, you have pushed it too far, Kuwait. It’s goodbye. Live in your filthy delusions. May your oil wells dry up.

  • Decnavda

    I suppose truth is not a defense…

  • left0ver1under

    Any “god” that can allegedly create the universe but does not directly act against blasphemy either:

    (a) does not exist, or

    (b) is not bothered by the blasphemy.

    The followers are not “defending god”, they are exhibiting their own violent impulses.

  • Aliasalpha

    Muhammad’s relatives? Never heard that one before. Also a bit surprising to see wives mentioned, I’d have expected them not to count

  • redpanda

    @ Zengaze #3:

    Isn’t the penalty for leaving Islam also generally execution? Not sure if Kuwait has it on the books, but in many Islamic countries that defense would just be substituting one capital crime for another.

  • Francisco Bacopa

    I am looking for adventure and fame, and have a bit of a death wish if the cause is right. So I suggest this project: I will go to Kuwait and break their blasphemy law.

    The FTB community will raise funds to hire a mercenary army to bust me out of prison. We all go on TV and become famous.

  • InfraredEyes

    Muhammad’s relatives? Never heard that one before. Also a bit surprising to see wives mentioned, I’d have expected them not to count

    I suspect that’s been added to cover cases like The Satanic Verses, which featured a group of prostitutes who impersonated Mohammad’s wives.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mpdeans Longjocks

    “Islam is a religion of tolerance, peace and acceptance, but that doesn’t mean it should be stepped on.”

    Fixed!

  • gvlgeologist

    Remind me again why we support Kuwait?

    Oh, yeah. Oil.

  • http://www.EverydayFreethought.com Everyday Freethought

    I thought that the definition of Islam was that it was a strict monotheism: There is no God but Allah.

    So how can you blaspheme by insulting Mohammed? He was a prophet, but he was not god. Neither were his relatives.