Malaysia: Christians Want Confiscated Bibles Returned

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA (Worthy News)-- Malaysia's Christian Federation and Bible Society are both appealing Selangor's administrative authorities to return more than 300 Bibles confiscated months ago in raids by the Islamic Department, according to International Christian Concern.

Passing the proverbial buck, the Selangor authorities advised both organizations to appeal the Attorney General for restitution from the Islamic Department, an independent branch of local Malaysian administration that actually led the raids that confiscated the Bibles.

During the raids, 321 bibles were seized and two Christian leaders were arrested and then released on bail.

The raids stemmed from a controversial ruling by an appeals court last October banning the Malaysian Catholic Herald from using the name "Allah". Following the ruling, officials at the Ministry of Interior seized 2,000 copies of the Herald at the airport in Kota Kinabalue in order to verify whether there was an unlawful use of the word "Allah" by the publication.

"Allah" has been used for centuries to denote deity in Malay language Bibles, but after the appeals court ruling, Malaysia is now the only Islamic majority state to ban the use of that name by non-Muslims.