Persecution of Ex-Muslims (Palestinian Authority area)

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Missing Muslim convert to Christianity returned to his family, slaughtered and cut into four pieces by Muslims[edit]

The body of a Muslim convert to Christianity who went missing in mid-July, has been returned to his family, slaughtered and cut into four pieces by Islamic extremists.

The man left his friends and family almost two weeks ago heading into a mountainous region of the Palestinian Authority area. He took Christian materials including cassettes, videos and Bibles with him. After approximately ten days during which his friends and family received no word from him, his body was returned to them. He had been brutally killed and his body carved into four pieces as a warning to other converts. He leaves behind a wife and two small children. The names and further details of those involved are being withheld by Barnabas Fund for their own safety.

Local Christians in this part of the Holy Land have been involved in supporting converts from a Muslim background who suffer persecution from Islamic extremists in the Palestinian Authority areas. Some of them have also been the target of attacks. Last year one such Christian received a phone call telling him that a Muslim convert was in a serious condition in hospital; in response he immediately set off in his car. On the way his vehicle was deliberately driven off the road by another car. The phone call later proved to be a hoax designed to lead him into trap. In another attempt on his life this same Christian was hospitalised. Local Christians working to support converts from Islam report that Islamic militants in the Palestinian Authority area deliberately target converts. Hamas in particular reportedly receives funding from Iran specifically for this purpose.
Muslim Convert to Christianity Butchered
Project Open Book, July 29, 2003

Christian covert who was arrested and tortured over several months in P.A. jails for his apostasy, shot dead by masked gunmen[edit]

El-Ashwal, a father of eight who lived in the Askar refugee camp near the West Bank city of Nablus, was arrested and tortured in P.A. jails for converting to Christianity, said Weiner.

"He was taken to jail for a couple of months and they questioned him a lot about his Christian beliefs. They asked him to reveal the names of other Christians he knew and they promised him that if he'd go back to Islam, they'd give him a good, high-paying job and an office of his own," he said.

El-Ashwal was beaten; his car was firebombed; and he was forced to close his successful falafel stand when his landlord wouldn't renew his lease because of his Christian faith. He ran an underground church from his home in the refugee camp and when he didn't return to Islam, masked men knocked on his door in January 2004 and shot him dead.

"[There was] never any investigation. I tried even finding a newspaper report saying somebody had been shot and killed -- there wasn't any," said Weiner. His family won't meet with any foreigners any more, he added.
Palestinian Christians Are Persecuted, Author Says
Julie Stahl, CNSNews, November 21, 2005

Shunned by family and friends and declared 'apostates' for their unorthodox beliefs, Ahmadi couple endure insults and death threats from neighbors, and are forcibly divorced by Palestinian court[edit]

For more than a year, a Palestinian couple belonging to an Islamic sect rejected by many mainstream Muslims endured insults from some of their neighbours and even death threats while struggling to maintain a quiet existence in this West Bank town.

As word spread about them, things got worse. A local Islamic court branded them apostates and dissolved their marriage. The couple, Mohammed and Samah Alawneh, now live in legal limbo.

Their plight demonstrates the tensions between a still largely conservative Palestinian society and a Western-backed government expected by the international community to ensure democratic freedoms.
. . .
Mohammed's family renounced them. Some of Samah's colleagues at the university where she works shun her, though others do not.

Then last year, a prosecutor in the local Islamic court, which regulates Muslim marriages, filed a complaint against them, accusing them of apostasy. They were found guilty in August, according to documents the couple showed The Associated Press.