[Deathpenalty] death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Thu Jan 24 23:25:56 CST 2008
Death Sentence for Afghan Student
An Afghan court in northern Afghanistan sentenced a journalism student to
death for blasphemy for distributing an article from the Internet that was
considered an insult to the Prophet Muhammad, the judge in charge of the
court said Wednesday.
The student, Sayed Parwiz Kambakhsh, 23, who also works for a local
newspaper, was charged with insulting Muhammad by calling the prophet "a
killer and adulterer," the judge, Shamsurahman Muhmand, said in a
The sentence was denounced as unfair by Mr. Kambakhshs family and
journalists organizations. Mr. Kambakhsh's brother, Sayed Yaqub Ibrahimi,
denied that his sibling had committed blasphemy, and said that his brother
was not given enough time to prepare his defense and was denied a lawyer.
Mr. Kambakhsh has the right of appeal to the regional court and the
He is being punished for articles written by his brother, said Jean
Mackenzie, director of the Institute for Peace and War Reporting in
Afghanistan, which has printed some of Mr. Ibrahimi's articles. Officials
from the National Directorate of Security raided Mr. Ibrahimis home and
seized his computer hard drive the day after his brother was arrested in
October, she said. They were most interested in the sources for an article
critical of a local militia leader and legislator named Piram Qol, she
The case is the 3rd time that clerics have called for death for a
blasphemer in the 6 years since the removal of the Taliban leadership and
reflects the deep conservatism that prevails even under the more liberal
government of President Hamid Karzai.
Mr. Kambakhsh is a student in the town of Mazar-i-Sharif and also works as
a reporter for a daily paper, Jahan-e-Naw. He was accused of downloading a
controversial article and adding some of his own words about the ignorance
of the Prophet Muhammad on women's rights.
(source: New York Times)
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