Michel Hoebink 15-05-2007
Hundreds, perhaps thousands of Muslims in the Netherlands who had left his religion did not dare to come clean in public. If they do that, they would be threatened. At least this is the opinion of the founders of the Central Committee of Ex-Muslims in the Netherlands. They want to break the taboo issues of religious left.
Does not match Ehsan Jami (22 years), members of the labor party PvdA in Leidschendam-Voorburg council, a small town near The Hague, came from Iran and emigrated to the Dutch eleven years ago with his parents. After the attacks of September 11, 2001, he came out of Islam.
After studying the Koran he concluded: "This religion does not fit with me." Parents Jami liberal enough so they do not have a problem with Jami decision. But other Muslims in her school did not agree and say that Jami 'humiliating Islam. "
Jami founded the Central Committee of Ex-Muslims with Loubna Berrada, the conservative liberal VVD party politician who was also a former Muslim. They supported and advised by the two leaders highly critical of Islam: legal expert Paul philosopher Afshin Ellian en Cliteur.
Threat According to Jami, the problem of changing the religion 'is the biggest taboo' among the Muslim community. Thousands of young Muslims in the Netherlands is said to have left their religion but did not dare to come clean. According to Jami, if they declare it openly, they will be denounced, ostracized and even threatened.
Jami said that in Holland a lot of people were threatened with death. Loubna Berrada (31) agree with Jami. "Many Muslims are no longer running the teachings of Islam, but did not dare to be honest out of Islam. We want people who leave Islam is not threatened with death."
Freedom of choice According to Jami, this is a very big problem that some are still hidden among the Muslim community. This is similar to the taboo surrounding homosexuality in ancient times in Holland. Muslims did not discuss the issue out of this religion and the CMO, a body of negotiations between Muslims and the government, are silent.
By establishing this organization, the founders wanted the issue out of religion can be discussed among the Muslim community. In addition they wanted the Dutch government believes more firmly on the constitutional rights of religious freedom of ex-Muslims. Actually taboo issue out of religion is not restricted to Muslims only. Many Dutch politicians are also reluctant to discuss this issue, for fear of being branded provocateur or stigmatization of Muslims.
Jami also accused his own party, the labor party PvdA, close eye on this issue. According to Jami, the government should provide information through schools, mosques and television on religious freedom in the Netherlands. "We do not intend to invite a Muslim an apostate-yack, but want to make people aware of the freedom of choice."
From Germany The idea of establishing this organization comes from Germany. Last February a migrant from Iran, Mina Ahadi, who founded a similar club called: "We have left" (Islam, ed). Since then Ahadi and friends of the founders of the organization often threatened killed so they are constantly guarded by the police.
Criticism But there are also those who criticize Jami and his friends. Haselhoeff Abdallah, chairman of the Dutch Muslim Council, to assess the idea as a political trick. According to him, they had raised fears of citizens and aims to achieve political victory. Muslims who came out of Islam in the Netherlands, according to him, during this almost never a problem.
These ex-Muslim committees are still in the process to set up and does not yet have any members or web site. Coming months will be organized work plan that will be officially presented next September. Jami willing to invite Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende to ask him to hold open debate on the guarantees of religious freedom and freedom of no religion in the Netherlands.