Afghan journalism student sentenced to death for blasphemy

[JURIST] An Afghan journalism student charged with blasphemy was sentenced to death Tuesday, following a recommendation from the Afghan Council of Mullahs. A three-judge panel found that papers printed from the Internet by 23-year-old Sayad Parwez Kambaksh, allegedly including discussion of women's role in society, insulted Islam and invoked Article 130 of the Afghanistan Constitution [text], allowing for execution consistent with Hanafi [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] law. Kambaksh showed the papers to a university teacher and classmates, some of whom said Kambaksh wrote the document himself. It was not clear if Kambaksh had legal representation at the trial, and his trial date was not made public. He will remain in prison as the sentence is appealed.

Kambaksh has received public support [RWB report] from Reporters Without Borders [advocacy website], as well as European Parliament President Hans-Gert Pöttering [official website]. On Monday, Afghan prosecutor Hafizullah Khaliqyar said Kambaksh supporters would be imprisoned. AP has more.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.