Activists say six Libyans face death penalty over converting to Christianity

May 3, 2023 | Libyan actors

On 3 May, The Guardian newspaper reported that six Libyans were facing the death penalty for converting to Christianity and proselytising under laws that activists said were increasingly being used to silence civil society and human rights organisations. They are being charged under article 207 of the penal code, which punishes any attempt to circulate views that aim to “alter fundamental constitutional principles, or the fundamental structures of the social order”. Libya’s Internal Security Agency (ISA) had arrested the men and women last month, along with a US citizen who has since been released and deported. Citing a lawyer for one of the detainees, the report said their families discovered they had been arrested when videos of their confessions were posted online by the ISA, which issued a statement saying the arrests were to “stop an organised gang action aiming to solicit and to make people leave Islam”.