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Published On: Wed, Apr 2nd, 2014

New laws in Saudi Arabia label atheism as a form of terrorism

New laws and regulations in Saudi Arabia link atheism to terrorism, Human Rights Watch reported in an April 2 article.

Anti-terrorism regulations issued by the Saudi interior ministry are called “sweeping” by Human Rights Watch (HRW), which reported that one of the “terrorism” provisions is, “Calling for atheist thought in any form, or calling into question the fundamentals of the Islamic religion on which this country is based.”

“Saudi authorities have never tolerated criticism of their policies, but recent laws and regulations turn almost any critical expression or independent association into crimes of terrorism, including atheism,” HRW wrote on its website on Tuesday. “The laws are so sweeping, they can be used to criminalize virtually any expression critical of the government and its understanding of Islam.”

The Saudi Kingdom appears to be discouraging Saudis from joining Al Qaeda-linked rebels in Syria against the Assad regime, concerned that would pose a great threat to the national security in Saudi Arabia.

According to HRW, the new measures “threaten to close down altogether Saudi Arabia’s already extremely restricted space for free expression.”

“These regulations dash any hope that King Abdullah intends to open a space for peaceful dissent or independent groups,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East and North Africa director at Human Rights Watch.

Image/CIA

Image/CIA

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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