Saudi Minister: All Equal Before Sharia
09/28/2018 Saudi Arabia (International Christian Concern) – The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) is currently visiting Saudi Arabia to discuss the Kingdom’s stance on interreligious dialogue. Justice Minister Waleed al-Samaani briefed USCIRF. He said that Saudi laws are based on Sharia which value all people equally, regardless of religion.
The reality is that, because of Sharia, Saudi Arabia only recognizes Muslims as legitimate citizens. While expats are given some religious freedom, these freedoms are kept within narrow parameters and they are not allowed to publically practice. Conversion from Islam to Christianity is still a crime, which is punishable by death according to the laws.
Saudi Arabia has gone through great efforts under the leadership of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to show the West that it is liberalizing. They have made symbolic gestures, such as inviting high profile clergy members into the country, which reference religious freedom. But the government has not yet taken any actionable steps to protect the right of religious freedom.
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