New York Times article on the case of Lina Joy – A truly depressing time for Malay Christians indeed!

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Aug. 19 — From the scant personal details that can be pieced together about Lina Joy, she converted from Islam to Christianity eight years ago and since then has endured extraordinary hurdles in her desire to marry the man in her life.

Her name is a household word in this majority Muslim country. But she is now in hiding after death threats from Islamic extremists, who accuse her of being an apostate.

Five years ago she started proceedings in the civil courts to seek the right to marry her Christian fiancé and have children. Because she had renounced her Muslim faith, Ms. Joy, 42, argued, Malaysia’s Islamic Shariah courts, which control such matters as marriage, property and divorce, did not have jurisdiction over her.

In a series of decisions, the civil courts ruled against her. Then, last month, her lawyer, Benjamin Dawson, appeared before Malaysia’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, to argue that Ms. Joy’s conversion be considered a right protected under the Constitution, not a religious matter for the Shariah courts.

“She’s trying to live her life with someone she loves,” Mr. Dawson said in an interview.

Threats against Ms. Joy had become so insistent, and the passions over her conversion so inflamed, he had concluded there was no room for her and her fiancé in Malaysia. The most likely solution, he said, was for her to emigrate.

For Malaysia, which considers itself a moderate and modern Muslim country with a tolerance for its multiple religions and ethnic groups of Malays, Indians and Chinese, the case has kicked up a firestorm that goes to the very heart of who is a Malay, and what is Malaysia.

Her case has heightened a searing battle that has included street protests and death threats between groups advocating a secular interpretation of the Constitution, and Islamic groups that contend the Shariah courts should have supremacy in many matters.

Some see the rulings against Ms. Joy as a sign of increasing Islamization, and of the pressures felt by the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi as it tries to respond to the opposition Islamic party, Parti Islam Semalaysia.

About 60 percent of Malaysia’s 26 million people are Muslim, 20 percent are Buddhist, nearly 10 percent are Christian and 6 percent Hindu.

Malaysia has powerful Islamic Affairs Departments in its 13 states and in the capital district around Kuala Lumpur. The departments, a kind of parallel bureaucracy to the state apparatus that were strengthened during the 22-year rule of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, run the Shariah courts.

“Malaysia is at a crossroads,” Mr. Dawson said. “Do we go down the Islamic road, or do we maintain the secular character of the federal constitution that has been eroding in the last 10 years?”

In rulings in her case, civil courts said Malays could not renounce Islam because the Constitution defined Malays to be Muslims.

They also ruled that a request to change her identity card from Muslim to Christian had to be decided by the Shariah courts. There she would be considered an apostate, and if she did not repent she surely would be sentenced to several years in an Islamic center for rehabilitation.

Mr. Dawson said Ms. Joy had been interested in Roman Catholicism since 1990 and was baptized in 1998 at Our Lady of Fatima Church in Kuala Lumpur. Because she considered herself a Christian, Ms. Joy did not believe the Shariah courts applied to her. In an affidavit to a lower civil court in 2000, she said she felt “more peace in my spirit and soul after having become a Christian.”

Because of the death threats, including some calls to hunt her down, Mr. Dawson said, he could not say where she was, and could not make her available for an interview, even by telephone.

Similarly, her fiancé, whom Mr. Dawson referred to as Johnson, a Christian of ethnic Indian background whom Ms. Joy met in 1990, had received death threats and was not prepared to be interviewed.

Last month, Prime Minister Badawi appeared to side with the Islamists when he ordered that forums organized around the country to discuss religious freedom must stop. The forums, run by a group called Article 11, named after the section of the Constitution that says Malaysians are free to choose their religion, were disrupted on several occasions by Islamic protesters.

The chief organizer of the Article 11 forums, a well-known human rights lawyer, Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, a Muslim, received a death threat this month that was widely circulated by e-mail.

With the heading “Wanted Dead,” the message featured a photograph of Mr. Malik and said: “This is the face of the traitorous lawyer to Islam who supports the Lina Joy apostasy case. Distribute to our friends so they can recognize this traitor. If you find him dead by the side of the road, do not help.”

Mr. Malik, 36, who presented a brief in support of Ms. Joy to the Appeals Court, said he was seeking police protection. “We must not confuse the crucial distinction between a country in which the majority are Muslims, and is thus an Islamic country, and a country in which the supreme law is the Shariah, an Islamic state,” Mr. Malik said.

Conversions of Muslims to Christianity are not common in Malaysia, though most converts do not seek official approval for marriage and therefore do not run into the obstacles Ms. Joy confronted. One 38-year-old convert, who said in an interview at a Roman Catholic parish that he would provide only his Christian names, Paul Michael, and not his surname, for fear of retribution, described how he led a double life.

“Church members know us as who we are, and the outside world knows us as we were,” he said. He was fearful, he said, that if his conversion became public the religious authorities would come after him, and he could be sentenced to a religious rehabilitation camp.

One such place, hidden in the forest at Ulu Yam Baru, 20 miles outside the capital, is ringed like a prison by barbed wire, with dormitories protected by a second ring of barbed wire. Outside a sign says, “House of Faith,” and inside the inmates spend much of their time studying Islam.

Paul Michael said he and other former Muslims moved from church to church for services to avoid detection. They call themselves “M.M.B.B.,” for Malay Muslim Background Believers. “It’s a group of Malays who are no longer Muslims,” he said.

My thoughts on this? I have stated agin and again that Islamic fundamentalism and extremism has no place here in this multi-ethnic and multi-cultured society. There are so many things wrong about the governing of the Malays in this country – indeed, Malays have so many restrictions that there’s little doubt that many of them live in fear of punishment from the hardline authorities in the Islamic Affairs Dept and the Syariah Courts.

Make no mistake. It’ll be a very, very sad day in the history of Malaysia should the country one day turn into a full-on Islamic state like that of Iran, Indonesia and Afghanistan. That’ll certainly be the day when many Malaysians like myself be forced to leave the country because the restrictions on Malays will then be forced upon the Chinese, the Indians and the orang asli. Who knows? It may happen or it may not.

But when we have stupid leaders with loose tongues like that of Khairy (he said the Malays should be wary of the Chinese because if they don’t the Chinese will take the opportunity to assert more influence) and our Information Minister (who never let a day go by without bemoaning the Chinese’s lack of patriotism and love for the country just because we did not raise the flag), the rest of us non-Malays and non-Muslims have every right to be afraid and to be fearful of our future in this country. And if we cannot address issues like these in open forums, we would have no choice but to take it either to the foreign media or the Internet through the blogosphere.

It is hard to imagine how much various politicians have been trying to have our freedoms curtailed and restricted these past months. Banning the Article 11 forum is one of them – there goes the freedom of expression and discussion. Then there’s the discussion of regulating us bloggers. Then the calls from various politicians to cut down on negative news content that paints Malaysia in a bad light. Not to mention the lack of freedom of expression in theatre, films, music and books – the list of banned books, plays and music are endless. Some may truly deserve the ban, but if there are two things that i don’t like getting banned, they’re books and movies! Then, there’s also the issue of local councils whose councillors act as if they’re Lords and Emperors of Old – making decisions not for the best of the people, but for his own gain. Thank goodness the one bright spot has been the sacking of Ahmad Termizi as the Mayor of Petaling Jaya! An idiot if there ever was one!

Vision 2020 seems like a very long way away from materialising. How can we ever consider ourselves to be a developed country by then when the minds of our politicians and many other members of the public are still so narrow, so archaic, so draconic. I want to warn these politicians that they had better allow us and the Malay people who wish to embrace a different faith be given the freedoms we rightly deserve or risk the country going the way of Iraq and Afghanistan!

To the hardline Islamists, resorting to death threats can only show how terribly wrong and insane you are!

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  1. passionate writing, philip! i too feel deeply sad for lina joy

    surely it is a fundamantal human right to be able to choose your religion? (and the choice of an individual should not be seen as a slur

    and as for this being a country where freedoms are becoming more and more restricted, i have to agree … book banning/restricting being what gets me hottest under the collar these days

  2. muslim

    there are freedom in choosing yourfaith, but not in islam. we have our own regulations, our own rules. apostatsy is illegal in our religion. i’m sorry, but this is islamic country and we have to give muslim a priority. if you are afraid, think of me, think of us, the muslims who are threatened all over the world, and now my own country is breaking the islam rules. my religion is more threatened than yours or your freedom.

  3. muslim

    one more thing, death is the right thing for the apostate. it is stated in our law. why can’t you guys,the non-muslims and the muslims, respect the law of our religion?

  4. No offense, but I find it hard to understand a dictatorial religion that promises cruel treatment as punishment for leaving the faith.

    Religion is a matter of the one’s personal choice – not the choice of the ‘Supreme Leader’ of the faith. It’s a matter between the believer and God. What right have the rest of us got over how one should lead one’s life according to a faith?

    The way I see it, Islam is a draconian religion that bodes ill for one’s individual civil liberties. Edit: It was unfair of me to say this four months ago, so I apologise to everyone who had been insulted by it. If Islam is draconian, then the same can be said about every other religion in the world. – 15/01/207

    I am reminded of the Eagles’ song Hotel California in which they sung these lyrics – “You can check in/but you can’t check out!”

    That’s a perfect description of the religion of Islam.

    I’m not saying your religion is wrong entirely. No, there are aspects of your religion that I really like – such as five days prayer and the requirement to fast one month. I wish my own faith had this requirement because it’ll probably enlighten us more. But then again, the freedom of choice accorded to us by my faith is the most important thing. Islam, sadly, doesn’t have that and the one thing I do not like is one religion proclaiming that they’re better than the rest of us. That hypothesis is so totally flawed and smacks of arrogance, contempt and disrespect for other religions and beliefs.

    Did I ever say my religion was better than yours? Never, because my religion has its own faults. So does yours. And unfortunately, this debate will get us no where so I’ll consider the matter close and we’ll just have to agree to disagree as long as you don’t start shoving your religion down other people’s throats.

  5. itz very surprising for a country that claims itself an Islamic state continues to have pig farms, gambling casinos, night clubs and beer breweries so proudly and openly erected throughout the country. Even more interesting is the fact that, construction labourers whom are employed to build mosques consume liquor, eat pork an are of non-muslims. The muslims in this country continue to enjoy the present development due to the contribution of other non-muslims. People from all races and religious denomination should continue to believe that people from different religions lives happily, blessed and content.Therefore being patriotic on one particular religion for the sake of others is insane and silly. Malaysians should recognise this fact and continue to render religious freedom as long as whatever they practice does not infringe on other peoples peace.

  6. I so totally have to agree with you there, thewiseone!

  7. animah

    Hi Philip,

    I came here via Sharon’s blog. I am heartened to see that you are becoming very aware of the undercurrents in our country and I share your concern. I worry that many Malaysians are denying that we have a problem, or just want to take the typical attitude of sweeping it all under the carpet.

    The comment by “Muslim” above is I believe the majority view of the Malay Muslim and he was quite restrained in his/her comments. However you are probably aware that even the Muslims do not share the same view on apostasy. I, for instance believe in freedom of religion and that the Quran upholds this principle. Unfortunately the religion in this country is being used as a power game. What is sad is that the “masses” do not choose to reflect (which is asked by us of the Quran) but merely follow leaders without questioning. Acting without reflecting on the consequences – this is what can lead to conflict, and worse, violence.
    I don’t have the answers, other than to ask others to look deep within and ask themselves whether they are being true to themselves.

  8. Corgan

    Regarding comments by muslim, let me ask. If you were Muslim by birth simply because your parents were and you want to walk out of the religion that isn’t your choice in the first place, is it apostasy?

    And there are Muslims that always had these “we’re oppressed” mentality which in turn is used as an excuse to oppress others, like how Israelis/Zionists do these days to oppress the Lebanons and Palestines. They feel oppressed simply because they see more and more women not covering themselves in headscarves, more Muslims committing incest, adultery, consuming liquor, taking drugs, gambling etc in public. They see Shamala’s child custody case and Lina Joy’s as a form of attack against them instead of vice-versa.

    The perfect illustration are the ultra-Malay nationalists who resides in the UMNO party. They raise their keris and threaten to draw out blood to anyone who dares to question so-called Malay supremacy.

    I reinterated in forums abroad that multi-cultural Malaysia is a myth. We’re probably the only country that still practices aparthied after S.Africa abolishes the practice. How can we call ourselves Glokal Malaysians when discrimination in forms of New Economic Policy and Shariah courts exists in this country?

    Ironically, none of UMNO leaders attended the funeral of Reverend Venerable Dr K. Sri Dhammananda Nayaka Maha Thera, while PAS Vice-President Husam Musa and Treasurer Dr Hatta Ramli attended the funeral. Where is Khairy, Hishamuddin etc? There is no secret now who are the real extremists in this country, and only Malaysians themselves can salvage their country by exercising their votes in the upcoming elections.

  9. Salutations,

    Like other religions, there is political islam and there is the non politicised islam. Remember the INQUISITIONS and recently, India’s flirtation with the BJP or even BUSH’s christianity? there are just too many examples.

    If you wish to understand the non politicised religion, you need to shut off from; the daily media mongering, God’s intermediaries and people of the cloth.

    If we are true seekers of truth, Read the Torah, the Old Testament/injil and the Quran or any other Books for that matter.. You will find that there is no compulsion in religion. Specifically if you read the Quran you will find that, there is no such thing as punishment for apostasy.

    The Syariah is man made law and has its flaws. AS with other laws it is a political tool to govern. So seekers of truth, do not be fooled by what you see and hear and what your masters would like you to hear.

    Peace..

  10. Rita

    Why do we want to turn Msia into a utopian nation? We are multiracial/multireligious and hence, racial and religious problems are EXPECTED.Why do we have like this should not be? Muslims should not behave like Muslims, etc.While there are so many non-Msian no Muslims who keep an open mind to Islam and Muslims, I find my fellow Msians are not.You deny your fellow Muslims their own freedom of expression and their right to defend their faith when under attack (mostly people outside the religion telling us how to run our own faith/belief) Puhlez…let us deal with our own prob without YOU telling us on how it ought to be done.Lina Joy is still a Muslim till the court says otherwise.If she chooses to be a Christian without the court/s endorsement, that is between her and God.Constitutionally she is still a Muslim.Learn to deal with that, constitutionally.:)

  11. i just dont get it dude bout the muslim way of thinking.lets just say that your great grandfather was a fool, and ur grandfather is also a fool, and ur parents are fools as well….does that inevetably make u a fool too. similarly a person born in a muslim family should also have the right not to be a muslim right!

  12. journeyofadreamer

    What can one say when one wishes to choose what they believe in and the other side, fearful of losing their brethren, resort to such forceful methods?

    Just one thing: “God be with us all and see us through to a new day!”

  13. this is a little late, but this is too well-written that i can’t not leave my two bits. i cannot help but find myself agreeing with your arguments and i really learnt a thing or two today about this issue from reading this post. wish i have that much passion to write about important issues like this rather than my typical navel-gazing blogging material. *sigh*

  14. Why Islam being seen as a cruel religion? Islam has always been a beautiful religion. However, the behaviour of the Muslims especially in this era had tarnished Islam good name. Islam is a religion that demands Muslims to be matured and serious about following the teaching of Islam. Hence, once a person embrace Islam, he/she is not allowed to denounce it and the penalty is death in Shariah Law (Islamic Law – the law that every Muslims have to abide). Such punishment shows that embracing Islam is a serious matter that need deep thinking, considerations and willingness to abide the Shariah Law. It is not a religion of convenience played as a game use for fun and laughter! In the case of born Muslims, it is the duty of the Muslim parents to educate their children with Islamic studies so that these children will grow up to be responsible Muslims, holding strong to the faith and protect the good name of Islam through their behaviours. Apparently the above case shows the failure of the Muslim parents to instill the teaching of Islam into the life of their off-springs. In my opionion, a born Muslims who denounce Islam lack Islamic knowledge and refuse to learn about Islam taking an easy way out. Whose fault it is? Islam, the Muslim parents or their Muslim born offsprings. The answer is both the Muslim parents and their offsprings …..ie the Muslims are at fault. Islam is a way of life that teaches human how to live and survive in this world in a peaceful way full of joy and love. Hence, if a believer of Islam failed or choose not to follow the teaching of Islam than he/she was the one at fault. But that does not mean that he/she is become non-muslim because he/she did not comply to the teaching of Islam!..eg there are muslims who drink, who visit prostitutes and etc. But they are still Muslims. So never ever said that Islam is a draconian religion that bodies ill for one’s individual civil liberties! It is the individual himself/herself that is evil and selfish, misusing religion as an excuse to support his/her own individual beneficial gain!

  15. Phillip,

    As much as I agree in separating church (or mosque) and state, and that Lina Joy is in a precarious situation, and that our religion is our own business – saying “The way I see it, Islam is a draconian religion that bodes ill for one’s individual civil liberties” (direct quote from YOU) is extremely problematic.

    The same can be said for Christianity. Or Judaism. Or any other faith based in seemingly conservative values. The faith ITSELF is NOT draconic or evil or whatever. It is actually quite progressive (especially for its time) and allows a lot of rights and freedoms.

    The problem is not in the belief, it’s in the people. It’s in the people who twist the words of the religion to their own use and benefits. “There is no compulsion in Islam.”

    While I agree with your central thesis, that one sentence pretty much wrecked your argument because it shows ignorance of the religion. You’d probably make a better case – as many others with the same view have – if religions were better understood, not taken at their stereotypes.

  16. I apologise Ti… I now know better than to say something like that… it was written in heat of the moment.. but that should not be an excuse for me to do so.

    The same could be said about my religion too actually, so many aspects of it that I don’t like too. The way it goes, all religions have its good and bad qualities, we should try to eradicate the bad and enforce the good.

    Sorry if that statement of mine had offended anyone.

  17. Philip,
    In this issue, Malay, Islam, and Malaysia is involved. One should understand that Malay is a race, Islam is a religion and Malaysia is a country with Islam as a state religion. Hence a Malay may not neccessarily be a Muslim. A Malay man or lady can be a Christian, Hindu or even a free thinker. Even though the state religion of Malaysia is Islam, the Islamic Law (Hukum Hudud) like those being practised in Saudi Arabia is not being implemented. The Islamic Law, “Hukum Hudud” is the full Shariyah Law that should be practised by a Muslim state. However, there are two courts in the Malaysian Legislation……Civil Court for Malaysian and Shariyah Court for Malaysian Muslims. The problem here is that most of the Malaysian Malay Muslims do not understand this. To them Malaysia is Malay and Malay is Muslim. They had forgotten about other races and religions that exist in Malaysia. In my opinion, the case of Lina Joy, she should be judged by the Civil Court because she is a Malaysian and no longer a Muslim. And in the Civil Court she has done nothing wrong in crime and hence, she is a free person! That is the beauty of Malaysia….a multi racial country that protects its people by using two different Courts to govern the country to achieve peace and harmony. In the case of Lina Joy, one must understand here that the issue is about Lina being a Malaysian irregardless of her believes. As a Malaysian she has the right to chose the civil court…..that is her rights as a Malaysian. However, as an individual Muslim, she has no choice but to abide with the Shariyah Law. The Shariyah Law that I am referring here is not the Shariyah Law in the Malaysian Shariyah Court governed by the Malaysian Government. The Shariyah Law I am referring to here is the Law that govern the life of every individual Muslim all over the world and this law (Hukum Hudud) is from the Quran written by the Lord of this universe and it is binding to every Muslims. Hence, Lina being a Muslim who converts to Christanity, is still binded to the Shariyah law and like any other Muslims she has to abide to this law. So everywhere Lina goes in this face of the earth, may it be USA, Australia, Britain or any other country in this world, she is still being binded to the Shariyah Law which states that a Muslim who denouce Islam the punishment is death. So as I can see it, Lina is lucky to be in Malaysia because the country does not practise the type of Shariyah Law that is prevailing in Saudi Arabia and other middle-easten countries. Otherwise she will be dead by now! However, according to Islam, if she is not being punished in this world she will be punished in the hereafter. As I said before, Islam is a serious religion and one should study the religion in depth and make serious consideration in every aspect before embracing Islam. And for those, especially born Muslims who wish to denouce Islam should also consider seriously the consequences of doing so…..hence learning about Islam in depth is necessary before taking an easy way out by abandoning the religion. So in short, in the context of the Malaysian court of Law, Lina has not committed any crime and it is none of anybody business what religion she wants to embrace. So whatever wrong she had done in concerning her religion is between her and God. So in my opionion, the Muslims in Malaysia (particularly the Malays since majority of them are Muslims) should not make a big fuss out of this issue because Lina is free of crime according to the Malaysian System of Law. So she should not be disturbed, instead should be given privacy to enjoy her rights as a Malaysian and live peacefully in Malaysian embracing whatever faith she has chosen. Anyway, Philip, I like to listen to the song Hotel California sung by the Eagles ….but unlike the lyrics of the song….In Islam….. you are welcome to ‘check-in’ …..but you can’t ‘check out’…. because your soul does not want to leave as it has found the beauty of Islam after learning the true teaching of the faith upon ‘checking-in’!

  18. I am glad that there are Malays like you and like so many of my friends out there who are open-minded and are enlightened about the true teachings of Islam. There’s no doubt that the religion is beautiful in a lot of ways, so the fact that it has been twisted and turned into something ugly is something that we should deplore and fight against.

    You’re quite right in saying that being a Malay does not mean one is Muslim, just like me being Chinese doesn’t mean that I am a Buddhist and an Indian doesn’t have to be a Hindu. Unfortunately, there are stubborn blind fools who think otherwise.

    This can be solved – through educating our young. I could only hope that people will teach our kids to look beyond racial and religious lines and see the good that is in all of us and in all religions. It’s a difficult task, but when the majority subscribes to this change and make the effort to so, there’s nothing the minority could do about it.

  19. Philip,
    Sorry to dissapoint you…..Yes, I a Muslim but I am not a Malay. My father was born in the island of Java in Indonesia to a Boyanese Born-Muslim Man and a Japanese Muslim Convert Woman. So that makes me a Boyanese, an Indonesian ethnic group. He married a Malaysian, my mother…..that is…. my Malaysian connections.

    Yes I agree with you, it is only through educating our young that this problem can be solved. I too hope our next generation will be more educated, more open-minded with the ability to look beyond racial and religious lines in order to achieve quality life living peacefully in harmony in a multi-racial and multi-religion society.

  20. Cool! So your mom’s a half Japanese/Malaysian? I’ve always been fascinated with mixed marriages. In this modern day – in my humble opinion – racial/ethnic purity is a thing of the past, and mixed marriages is a way to blur the racial lines and encourage unity.

    And thanks for your condolences. It has been a difficult year… for my mom at least. She’s coping well, she’s a strong woman that I admire.

  21. Philip,
    There is nothing spectacular being born into a multi-racial family other than being able to fool those around you in regards of your racial identity…..I am often being mistaken for a Chinese due to physical appearance especially my facial features!

    Hmm….about my mom…..she became a Malay! Interestingly it is possible to get a change in race in Malaysia. The Malaysian constitution states that to be a Malay one must be Muslim. Hence, a Malaysian born muslim with Malay as the spoken language is considered a Malay. So in the Malaysian context, my mon is a Malay even though her dad was a Boyanese with mixture of Arab and Dutch (thanks to the Arab traders and the Dutch who colonized Indonesia!).

    My maternal grandpa migrated to Malaya with his newly wedded wife, adopted the Malay culture and learned to speak the language of the Malays. And so my mom was born in a household that speaks the Malay language and being a Malaysian born muslim she became a Malay!……I am so amazed on how a race can be changed to another simply through migration across two different countries.

    I agreed with you that pure ethnic race is the thing of the past and this has been happening since the colonization days. As a result, the indigeneous people of this Heperenesia region (an area spanning from southern part of Taiwan through Philippines, Borneo, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia and westwards to Madagascar in Africa) got so mixed-up that they cannot distinguish their own race identity! This is very true especially in Malaysia that races belonging to the MALAYO-AUSTRONESIAN group typically Bugis, Malay, Banjaree, Javanese, Boyanese, Sundanese, Achehes, Minangkabanese and so on…..have to be classified as MALAY.

    No doubt that such classification facilitates the administration of the citizens in a country, unfortunately it is also being used by politicians in the politic arena. Race and Religon are commonly used as tools by politicians for their own personal interest at the expense of fellow citizens. There is always hidden agenda behind such applications. Apparently Lina’s case is a classic example. Otherwise her renounciation of the Islamic faith will not be so heated up in the limelights.

    Slogan such as ”Malay is Muslim” and Muslim is Malay” are merely gimmicks to stir the stability and peace of a country…..I am so totally disagree with such slogans simply because there are many Malays who are non-muslims especially in Sumatra and in Philippine (90% are ethnic Malay) majority of them are Christians and Catholics, while Islam itself is a Universal religion embraced by many people from different races all over the world. The conclusion is always very disturbing……..Islam gets a bad name! In the case of Lina Joy…..The Islamic Law is seen by the non-muslims to be having imperfections when the fact is that there are certain flaws in the man-made legislations in the Malaysian court of law that are not clearly define to the understanding of the fellow citizens.




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