Turkish writer Mustafa Akyol detained in Malaysia for 18 hours
ISTANBULTurkish writer Mustafa Akyol stated on Sept. 26 that he was detained by police in Malaysia for 18 hours before being released.
“It is true. Thank God I am now free after 18 hours in detention. Thanks so much to all who helped, supported, and prayed,” Akyol tweeted on Sept. 26.
He was held by Malaysian immigration authorities on Sept. 25 at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport and prevented from boarding a flight to Istanbul, after the Federal Territories Islamic Affairs Department (Jawi) accused the writer of teaching without official credentials from the religious authorities.
Akyol was summoned for “teaching without official credentials from the religious authorities, under Section 11 of the Shariah Criminal Offences [Federal Territories] Act,” which carries a fine for up to $713 or not more than three years of imprisonment, a source at the immigration department told Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency on Sept. 25.
Akyol was in Malaysia over the weekend to deliver a series of talks organized by the Islamic Renaissance Front (IRF), a local Muslim think tank, on “Does Freedom of Conscience Open the Floodgates to Apostasy” and “Is Democracy Still Relevant.”
Mustafa was due to present a talk on the afternoon of Sept. 25, which was cancelled after the writer received the summons from Jawi in an attempt to question him under the Federal Territories Shariah Criminal Offences Act.
The talk that was cancelled was scheduled to take place at the Nottingham University Malaysia teaching center in Kuala Lumpur, with Akyol speaking on his latest book: “The Islamic Jesus: How the King of the Jews Became a Prophet of the Muslims.”