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Scottish judge blocks deportation from UK of persecuted Malaysian Christian

West Europe

Scottish judge blocks deportation from UK of persecuted Malaysian Christian

Court of Sessions at Parliament House. Photo Credit: Scottish Courts

A judge in Scotland’s high court earlier this month blocked the Home Office from deporting a Malaysian Christian who faced death threats because members of her family had left Islam.

The judge, quoting the Home Office’s rejection letter, described how “In August 11 2014, a group of men forced themselves into your home [in Malaysia], a knife was put to your throat, and the rest of your family were threatened.” And affirmed that the Malaysian Christian was told by her attackers that it was “illegal” for her to live as a Christian, because her father was “still considered a Muslim but was practicing Christianity and living with a non-Muslim family.”

The Home Office officially stated that they “accepted” the woman’s testimony, which they said had “no outstanding credibility issues”. But remarkably, they still insisted on deporting her, even though she and her family had been threatened at knifepoint. The judge’s ruling now means that the Malaysian Christian can appeal against the Home Office’s decision. The woman has not been named for legal reasons.

Malaysian citizens’ compulsory identity cards list their religion and therefore Christians who convert from Islam are still officially regarded as Muslims. It is currently not possible for them to officially change their religion without having to go through Malaysia’s sharia court system, which would leave them open to being prosecuted for apostasy from Islam.