CEMB spokesperson Nahla Mahmoud under threat

Nahla Mahmoud is a vocal opponent of Sharia law, and it is being reported that her firm views have led to threats being issued against her, and to her family back in Sudan coming under attack. Maryam Namazie draws attention to the particularly damaging effects of criticisms allegedly made by a British citizen of Sudanese origin, Salah Al Bandar.

On 22nd January, Mr Al Bander posted an article in Arabic on the Sudanese Online Website (one of the most widely read websites in Sudan and throughout the Sudanese diaspora) entitled “A Sudanese woman announces that she is a ‘Kafira” on British TV.  In some parts of this article he says:

“I will not forgive anyone who wants to start a battle against Islam and the beliefs of the people…”, “Be aware of this ‘fitna’ and I know who is behind it and I will never have any mercy on her here…”, “I will have no tolerance for anyone here who talks about freedom of belief or freedom of thought or any of the other clichés…”

It’s quite difficult to map all of the quotations included in Maryam Namazie’s article onto the websites linked to, particularly when relying on google translate, so any input from Arabic speakers would be welcomed.

Here is some useful analysis which was provided by Shlomo in the comments.

The various quotes are from an initial forum posting by al-Bandar and his subsequent follow-up replies (NB there are also several commenters in the thread supportive of Nahla’s right to reject Islam) on the website sudaneseonline.com.

Having skimmed through most of the thread (it’s pretty long!), I can confirm that the translated quotes attributed to al-Bandar are accurate. However, whilst he uses what would appear to be inflammatory language, he never crosses the line into inciting Nahla’s murder for apostasy or writes anything else actionable, as far as I can see. Maryam Namazie acknowledges this by confirming that the police have declined to take any further action.

Nonetheless, as should be obvious to anyone with a reasonable understanding of Sudanese/Middle Eastern/Islamic mores, by highlighting her admission on Channel 4, Dr al-Bandar has drawn the unwelcome attention of those Sudanese, in particular, who are ill-disposed towards atheists; especially female atheists, who amount to a ‘double’ insult in their eyes. Whether or not he intended to stir up hatred against Nahla is academic, as he would certainly know that just by drawing attention to this hyper-sensitive issue, others could be relied upon to circulate the information. And yet, Nahla must have known that announcing her rejection of Islam on national TV would draw the ire of obscurantists. It was very brave of her to take such a risk, but also foolhardy as she should’ve foreseen the likely consequences for her family in Sudan.