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An-Na'im Refutes Rumors of Obama's Apostasy

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06/09/08

Abdullahi An-Na'im responds to two pieces about Senator Barack Obama, presumptive presidential nominee of the Democratic Party, as a possible Muslim apostate. An-Na'im, Emory Law professor and a senior fellow at the Center for Study of Law and Religion, discusses apostasy, its current legal standings in Muslim-majority countries, and the relationship of Islam and law in Kenya, the birthplace of Obama's father.

"The notion that Muslims would wish Sen. Obama harm because he left Islam (though he never embraced Islam and was raised Christian) is purely speculative and based on a misread of Shari'a and the history of Islam," says An-Na'im. "These conclusions do nothing but further stereotype a religion that is poorly understood in the West—particularly in the United States."

Click here to read An-Na'im's response to an op-ed titled "President Apostate?" that appeared in The New York Times, written by Edward N. Luttwak and a piece in The Christian Science Monitor titled "Barack Obama - Muslim Apostate?" by Shireen K. Burki.  Evan Derkacz posted a piece about An-Na'im's response in The Huffington Post titled "Swiftboating Obama: Renowned Muslim Scholar Couldn't Publish Apostasy Response."

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