Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Officially terrorist in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is a medieval despotism, with a medieval approach to human rights and freedom of religion. So its sadly unsurprising that they classify atheism as terrorism

Saudi Arabia has introduced a series of new laws which define atheists as terrorists, according to a report from Human Rights Watch.


Yet last month further regulations were issued by the Saudi interior ministry, identifying a broad list of groups which the government considers to be terrorist organisations - including the Muslim Brotherhood.

Article one of the new provisions defines terrorism as "calling for atheist thought in any form, or calling into question the fundamentals of the Islamic religion on which this country is based".

Great. I'm officially a terrorist in Saudi Arabia. Maybe I should get a badge or something?

But snark aside: cuius regio, eius religio isn't a good way to run a state in a world where there is a diversity of religious views. Quite apart from moral considerations, its not even practical: when the only way you can exercise your religion in peace is to overthrow the government, that's what people will try to do. Which is why civilised countries have abandoned it in favour of freedom of religion and a neutral state.