Freed from mental ward, atheist gets death threats

2014-07-03 22:32
A screengrab taken from a video purportedly from Islamist group Boko Haram released on Youtube in May 2012 reportedly shows Imam Abubakar Shekau. (YouTube, AFP)

A screengrab taken from a video purportedly from Islamist group Boko Haram released on Youtube in May 2012 reportedly shows Imam Abubakar Shekau. (YouTube, AFP)

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Lagos - A Nigerian atheist released from the mental ward to which his staunch Muslim family committed him by force says he is getting death threats.

Mubarak Bala tells The Associated Press by telephone that he is in hiding in the predominantly Muslim northern Nigeria and fears for his life. Blasphemy can be punished by death in some interpretations of Shari'ah law which holds in Nigeria's north.

Bala says he is trying to reconcile with his family, especially the father, two uncles and older brother who beat him up, drugged him and kept him in the psychiatric ward of Kanu Teaching Hospital for more than a week after he renounced Islam. His lawyer says relatives acted to keep Bala safe.

Bala was freed on Wednesday when striking doctors discharged all patients.

- AP
Read more on:    nigeria  |  west africa
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