Discrimination against atheists

Discrimination against atheists, both at present and historically, includes persecution of and discrimination against people who are identified as atheists. Discrimination against atheists may also comprise negative attitudes, prejudice, hostility, hatred, fear, or intolerance towards atheists and atheism.[5][6] Because atheism can be defined in various ways, those discriminated against or persecuted on the grounds of being atheists might not have been considered atheists in a different time or place. Thirteen Muslim countries officially punish atheism or apostasy by death and Humanists International asserts that "the overwhelming majority" of the 193 member states of the United Nations "at best discriminate against citizens who have no belief in a god and at worst can jail them for offences dubbed blasphemy".[2]

Countries in which apostasy or blasphemy against the local or state religion was punishable by execution under the law as of 2013. Currently, this occurs only in some Muslim-majority countries and Muslim-majority states in Northern Nigeria.[1][2][3][4]

In some Muslim-majority countries, atheists face persecution and severe penalties such as the withdrawal of legal status or, in the case of apostasy, capital punishment.[7]