SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Nation/World

November 26, 2013

Afghans ponder restoring of stoning for adulterers

Human Rights Watch reported from Kabul yesterday that the Afghan government is pondering a return to Taliban-era punishment of adultery with death by stoning and called on President Hamid Karzai to “reject this proposal out of hand.”

A spokesman for the Justice Ministry denied that the government had proposed resuming public execution by stoning for moral crimes, The Associated Press reported.

But Reuters news agency quoted a member of the Shariah law committee working on a new penal code, Rohullah Qarizada, as confirming that the ancient punishment was a subject of discussion.

“We are working on the draft of a Shariah penal code where the punishment for adultery, if there are four eyewitnesses, is stoning,” said Qarizada, who is also head of the Afghan Independent Bar Association.

Britain’s Guardian newspaper also reported that its correspondent in Kabul had seen the text of provisions in the draft penal code defining adultery as a capital crime and calling for public execution by stoning for married offenders.

“Men and women who commit adultery shall be punished based on the circumstances to one of the following punishments: lashing, stoning (to death),” Article 21 of the draft code states, the Guardian reported. It said another section of the proposed code calls for sentences to be carried out in public.

Work on the new penal code, to replace a 1976 version that doesn’t include stoning among its prescribed punishments, is expected to take at least two years to complete and bring into force, Justice Ministry official Mohammad Ashraf Azimi told the AP.

“As a member of the department for the punishment laws, I haven’t seen this part of the law they are mentioning,” Azimi said of the Human Rights Watch complaint. “I don’t know where they found it and why they are emphasizing it. We are the people working on it and we haven’t seen it.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Nation/World

Local News
  • City gets four bids for McKay School BEVERLY -- In the latest round of bids for the McKay School property, the city will consider four new proposals it received last week. The most recent proposals mark the fourth time the city has reviewed bids on the property and the second effort for

    August 20, 2014

  • Police to put down their pens, write electronic tickets BOSTON -- State troopers will soon toss handwritten tickets in favor of electronic citations to save money and time, and local police across the state could eventually follow suit. State police using the system will swipe or scan a driver's license t

    August 20, 2014

  • 140819_SN_DLE_VAPOR2 No 'butts' about it: Vapor stores pop up despite e-cig concerns Michael Greene sells e-cigarettes because they saved his life. And if they were available in the United States 17 years ago, they might have also spared his father, who smoked four packs of cigarettes a day for 40 years. "If you put too many regulati

    August 20, 2014 3 Photos

  • 140819_SN_DLE_MURPHY4 109 days, 2 new lungs later, Essex Deputy Sheriff Murphy comes home

    Dozens of friends and family members lined up on Balcomb Street Tuesday evening to greet Newton Murphy as he arrived home from his double lung transplant. Murphy, the Essex County deputy sheriff, had been in the hospital for 109 days after his surge

    August 20, 2014 8 Photos

  • Sex offender Matthew Delima, who fled with teen, gets 2-10 years

    SALEM -- A judge Tuesday returned a homeless Level 3 sex offender to state prison for two to 10 years, but he said that after reading police reports and other records in the case, he would have imposed even more time. The reason Judge Timothy Feeley

    August 20, 2014 3 Stories