August 27, 2014 · 1 Elul

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Reform Jewish Leader Commends Afghan Court’s Decision to Drop Capital Case Against Man Who Converted to Christianity
In response to the recent decision by an Afghan court to drop its case against Abdul Rahman, an Afghan citizen who faced the death penalty for converting from Islam to Christianity, Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement noting,” [R]emembering the centuries of religious persecution our community has faced, we are compelled to speak up when someone is prosecuted for living out the dictates of his or her faith.”

Saperstein: [R]emembering the centuries of religious persecution our community has faced, we are compelled to speak up when someone is prosecuted for living out the dictates of his or her faith.

Washington, March 28, 2006 - In response to the recent decision by an Afghan court to drop its case against Abdul Rahman, an Afghan citizen who faced the death penalty for converting from Islam to Christianity, Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement:

We commend the decision of the Afghan court to drop its case against Abdul Rahman, an Afghan citizen who faced the death penalty because of his religious convictions. The execution of any individual based on the exercise of religious beliefs is in direct contradiction of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Afghanistan has ratified.

Remembering the centuries of religious persecution our community has faced, we are compelled to speak up when someone is persecuted for living out the dictates of his or her faith. The Reform Jewish Movement has long been an outspoken and steadfast advocate for people around the globe who suffer torture, slavery, starvation, and death because of their religious identity. We urge the government of Afghanistan to clarify that no one will be subject to legal punishment simply because of their religious beliefs.

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The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose more than 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership includes more than 1800 Reform rabbis.



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