Thursday, August 09, 2007

Egyptian Court in Controversial Ruling: Christians Who Convert to Islam, Cannot Convert Back

A public debate has been underway in Egypt over the regime's treatment of
the country's Christians
. This debate emerged following lawsuits by
Christians who had converted to Islam and then reconverted to Christianity, and who were now demanding that the Egyptian Interior Ministry issue them new official documents in their original names and with "Christian" in the "religion" entry field.

In April 2007, the Egyptian administrative court rejected an appeal by
Christians who had converted to Islam and then reverted to Christianity, and
also accused them of apostasy against Islam - the punishment for which is death, according to the common interpretation.

Two months after the court ruling, the plaintiffs' appeal was accepted. The
Supreme Administrative Court instructed the Interior Ministry to permit the plaintiffs to have their identity cards again denote them as Christians, and called for a new law banning "playing" with religions. Further ruling in the case was postponed until September 2007.(1)

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