Following are excerpts from an interview with Egyptian Islamist Abu Al-'Ela Abd Rabbo, one of the assassins of secularist Farag Foda in 1992. The interview aired on Al-Arabiya TV on June 14, 2013
Interviewer: What was the religious justification for the assassination of Farag Foda?
Abu Al-'Ela Abd Rabbo: The punishment for an apostate is death, even if he repents.
If someone curses Allah or the Prophet in public, he should be punished by death. The punishment for apostasy is death.
Interviewer: Who is entrusted with carrying out this punishment?
Abu Al-'Ela Abd Rabbo: If there is a just Muslim ruler – or even a tyrannical one who implements the punishments decreed by Allah – he should carry out this punishment. But if that is not the case, and the ruler does not implement the shari'a, any of the citizens is entitled to carry out Allah's punishment.
Interviewer: What about the children of Farag Foda, who see you now enjoying your freedom? Don't you respect their feelings? After all, you killed their father.
Abu Al-'Ela Abd Rabbo: With all due respect, you must stop using these venomous methods, aimed at provoking the viewers' sentiments...
Interviewer: These are not venomous methods...
Abu Al-'Ela Abd Rabbo: Before you talk about Foda's family, let me ask you if you were not harmed by someone who cursed the Prophet and his wives? What gives you greater pain and sorrow? If you say that it is Farag Foda, then you should reexamine your faith. But if you say it is the attacks on the Prophet, his wives, and the Koran, then you have answered your own question.
Farag Foda is dead, and will receive his just desserts in the Hereafter. Let's move on.