There've been a couple of tweets about "blood money" and Indonesia, to do with impending executions by the Indonesian government of two members of the Bali Nine:

From Father Bob

Allowance is made/encouraged in the Quran to substitute "blood money" for "blood letting". Have we approached the Indonesian offended party?

From Fiona Patten

Will Indonesian govt accept blood money? I'm sure we can easily raise $1.9m which seems to be the price for a life http://gu.com/p/45zyb/stwprice

Is "Blood Money" a religious practice, or is it a cultural practice? Also, is it applicable in parts of Indonesia outside of Aceh, or only applicable in middle eastern countries like Saudi Arabia?

  • I don't have time to do up a proper answer right now, but the concept you're looking for is called "Diyya" in Islamic jurisprudence (relevant Wikipedia page here: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diyya)
    – goldPseudo
    Feb 18, 2015 at 2:56

2 Answers 2


As was mentioned in a comment (by @goldPseudo), this "blood money" is called "Diyya" in Islamic jurisprudence. In truth, this issue and even this word (Diyya) is available in the holy Qur'an as well:

وَمَا كَانَ لِمُؤْمِنٍ أَن يَقْتُلَ مُؤْمِنًا إِلَّا خَطَأً ۚ وَمَن قَتَلَ مُؤْمِنًا خَطَأً فَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مُّؤْمِنَةٍ وَدِيَةٌ مُّسَلَّمَةٌ إِلَىٰ أَهْلِهِ إِلَّا أَن يَصَّدَّقُوا ۚ فَإِن كَانَ مِن قَوْمٍ عَدُوٍّ لَّكُمْ وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مُّؤْمِنَةٍ ۖ وَإِن كَانَ مِن قَوْمٍ بَيْنَكُمْ وَبَيْنَهُم مِّيثَاقٌ فَدِيَةٌ مُّسَلَّمَةٌ إِلَىٰ أَهْلِهِ وَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مُّؤْمِنَةٍ ۖ فَمَن لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ شَهْرَيْنِ مُتَتَابِعَيْنِ تَوْبَةً مِّنَ اللَّـهِ ۗ وَكَانَ اللَّـهُ عَلِيمًا حَكِيمًا ﴿٩٢﴾

And never is it for a believer to kill a believer except by mistake. And whoever kills a believer by mistake - then the freeing of a believing slave and a compensation payment [lit: diyya] presented to the deceased's family [is required] unless they give [up their right as] charity. But if the deceased was from a people at war with you and he was a believer - then [only] the freeing of a believing slave; and if he was from a people with whom you have a treaty - then a compensation payment presented to his family and the freeing of a believing slave. And whoever does not find [one or cannot afford to buy one] - then [instead], a fast for two months consecutively, [seeking] acceptance of repentance from Allah. And Allah is ever Knowing and Wise.

[An-Nisa 92]

Furthermore, there are several traditions (hadiths) regarding Diyya in addition to the holy Qur'an.



Blood money is both cultural and religious practice. It is cultural first which was adopted in Islam. This verse 2:178, although cannot be cleanly translated says

But if the killer is forgiven by the brother (or the relatives, etc.) of the killed against blood money, then adhering to it with fairness and payment of the blood money, to the heir should be made in fairness. This is an alleviation and a mercy from your Lord.So after this whoever transgresses the limits (i.e. kills the killer after taking the blood money), he shall have a painful torment.[Mohsin Khan]

Would it be applicable in Indonesia?

Yes. Because there is no distinctions made in Islam based on people or region. Islamic laws is practice everywhere in the same way. But since it was really a cultural thing in Arabia, this law is strictly practiced only in Arabia. In other parts, it did not get wide recognition. But nevertheless, it is applicable in Indonesia.

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