Without international pressure, there is little to stop the Iranian government from ratifying a bill that will make apostasy (leaving Islam) a capital crime, warns human rights groups and experts. On Sept. 9, the Iranian parliament approved a new penal code by a vote of 196-7 calling for a mandatory death sentence for apostates, or those who leave Islam. The Christian and Baha’i communities of Iran are most likely to be affected by this decision. “Unless there is a coordinated and very strong effort from the international community to place pressure on Iran for this, I don’t think there will be anything stopping the Iranian government from passing this legislation,” Joseph Grieboski, founder of the Institute on Religion and Public Policy, told Compass Direct News. Read more about the apostasy bill and its effects in Iran.