Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Asia
Week) A Matter of Personal Faith? "In March, northwestern Perlis state passed the Islamic Faith
Protection Bill 2000, which empowers shariah enforcement officers to investigate suspected apostates.
An unrepentant offender would be detained for up to a year in a faith rehabilitation center. If, after
detention, he still refuses to repent, the shariah judge may declare that he is no longer a Muslim,
dissolve his marriage and determine his liabilities or obligations. Former Supreme Court judge Harun
Hashim says the Perlis provisions, which have not yet been implemented, were modeled after the federal
Restoration of Faith bill, which he helped draft."
(BBC) Call to ban women in Koran contest. "A senior Malaysian
official, who recently blamed women for social decay, has said they should be banned from Koran
recital contests in case their voices seduce men..''
Malaysia (Iviews.com) Farewell Adalusia: Apostasy bill a step backwards for Islam in Malaysia.
"The Bill also has a punitive character to it. Those who are found guilty of apostasy will be sent to
'Aqidah Rehabilitation Centres' where, presumably, they will be brought back to the 'true path' of
Islam. ... The punitive aspect of the Bill becomes most evident when we go through clauses 8, 9, 10
and 11 of the Bill. Under clause 8 of the Bill, an individual who 'refuses to repent' will 'be
detained at the Aqidah Rehabilitation Centre for a period not exceeding one year (8.b.i)'. Just what
these 'rehabilitation centres' are and what they are meant to do remains unclear."