In Egypt, atheists considered a 'dangerous development'

According to USA Today, in Egypt, there is seemingly no place where atheists or those thought to be non-believers are safe.

They've been targeted at cafes, harassed on the streets and fired as part of a broader backlash by society and the state against atheism and blasphemy.

"I have to keep my mouth shut when it comes to any criticism or satire about religion," said atheist Amr Mohammed. "If I wish to make a remark about religion or practice of religion regarding my own beliefs, I keep it to myself."

Dar al-Ifta, a government wing that issues religious edicts, released a survey in December claiming Egypt was home to exactly 866 atheists — a number deemed "a dangerous development." Days later, a Cairo coffeehouse described as an atheists' cafe was closed, media reported.

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Killing of Protester Prompts Rare Criticism From Egyptian State Newspaper

According to New York Times, The killing of Shaimaa al-Sabbagh, a peaceful protester whose body wasriddled with shotgun pellets on Saturday in Cairo, was condemned in an unusually frank editorial published Monday on the front page of Al Ahram, the flagship state newspaper in Egypt, and signed by its chairman, Ahmed Sayed el-Naggar.

Ms. Sabbagh was shot in front of witnesses and the cameras of several journalists when police officers suddenly fired at marchers carrying flowers to Tahrir Square to mark the fourth anniversary of Egypt’s Arab Spring uprising. Images of the attack on the protest, and of Ms. Sabbagh’s colleagues trying to evade arrest to save her, reverberated online, transforming the 32-year-old mother’s death into a new symbol of police impunity.

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Egypt’s War on Atheism

According to New York Times, It took one session on Jan. 10 for a court in the Nile Delta province of Beheira to sentence Karim al-Banna, a 21-year-old student, to three years in prison for saying on Facebook that he was an atheist. The student’s lawyer complained that he was denied the right even to present a defense, but an equally chilling aspect of Mr. Banna’s case is that his father testified against him.

Also telling is that Mr. Banna was originally arrested, in November, when he went to the police to complain that his neighbors were harassing him. This was after his name had appeared in a local newspaper on a list of known atheists. Instead of protecting him, the police accused him of insulting Islam.

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In Graphic Photos and On Twitter, ISIS Members Record and Tout Executions of Gay Men

According to The Daily Beast, the attacks, which also include the stoning of an adulterer, appear to have taken place in Mosul and were distributed by ISIS social media accounts.

These are obscene images. They depict two men thrown from the roof of a building as a crowd watches them fall to their deaths, and they purport to show the Islamic State (or ISIS) carrying out public executions before an audience in Iraq’s Nineveh province.

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Governments and religious institutions in the Middle East consider atheism a threat

According to DW, In Egypt and other Arab states, societies are heavily influenced by religion. Even so, many people evidently regard themselves as atheists, and both governments and religious institutions see this as a threat.

There are exactly 866 atheists living along the Nile - at least according to a recent survey by the government-run Egyptian institution "Dar al-Ifta," which keeps tabs on religious issues in the country. How exactly that number was determined is unclear, but the institution's verdict on the threat is surprising: according Dar al-Ifta, the fact that 0.001 percent of the Egyptian population does not believe in God is a reason to sound the alarm bells. After all, no country in the Arab world apparently has a higher number of "godless" people - Morocco being the runner-up with a purported 325 atheists.

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Islamic State Penal Code Promises Crucifixion, Lashing for Unbelievers

Harsh penalties for sodomy, theft, drinking alcohol

According to The Washington Free Bacon, the Islamic State (IS) has published it own penal code, which harshly penalizes actions such as sodomy and blasphemy with punishments including execution, crucifixion, lashing, and the severing of limbs, among other penalties.

IS (also known as ISIL or ISIS) issued the detailed document as a “warning and a reminder to people living under its rule” that any behavior not in accordance with strict Islamic law will be cruelly punished, according to the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), which translated a copy of the penal code posted at a radical online depot known as the Jihadi Media Platform.

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Isis 'executes 150 women for refusing to marry militants' and buries them in mass graves


According to Independent, ISIS has executed at least 150 women for refusing to marry militants in Iraq, Turkish media has reported.

A statement released by Iraq's Ministry of Human Rights on Tuesday said the militants had attacked women in the western Iraqi province of Al-Anbar before burying them in mass graves in Fallujah.

Some of the women killed were pregnant at the time, according to the Anadolu Agency.

"At least 150 females, including pregnant women, were executed in Fallujah by a militant named Abu Anas Al-Libi after they refused to accept jihad marriage," the statement said.

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