Afghan journalism student sentenced to 20 years for insulting Islam
An Afghan journalism student sentenced to death for allegedly ’insulting Islam’ had his conviction upheld but his sentence reduced to 20 years in prison by an Afghan central appeal court [October 21, 2008].
The prosecution alleged that Sayed Perwez Kambashkh, 24, downloaded from the internet and distributed an article by an Iranian writer questioning some of the tenets of Islam relating [to] women’s rights. He has always denied the charges.
He is alleged to have added three paragraphs to the offending article himself, one of which read: “This is the real face of Islam...the prophet Mohammad wrote verses of the Holy Quran just for his own benefit.”
At his appeal court trial today five professors of Balkh University, where the defendant was a student, claimed that Kambakhsh disrupted classes by asking “anti-Islam and insulting questions.”
Kambakhsh was originally sentenced to death by a local court in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif following his arrest in October 2007.