Afghan journalism student received death sentence for blasphemy

On January 22, 2008, an Afghan court sentenced journalism student Sayad Parwez Kambaksh to death for blasphemy. The panel alleged that Kambaksh's criticism of gender roles in Afghan society insulted Islam, an offense punishable by death under Article 130 of the Afghanistan Constitution. In February 2008, an interview with Kambaksh revealed that the court had denied him legal representation during the trial. An Afghan appeals court permitted Kambaksh to appeal his case, and in October 2008 his sentence was reduced from death to 20 years imprisonment. In March 2009, Kambaksh and his lawyers learned that the Supreme Court of Aghanistan had upheld the sentence during a secret hearing.



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