Last edited: February 14, 2005

Harsh Penalties Remain for Gays in Afghanistan

Washington Blade, April 19, 2002

AFGHANISTAN—According to an Associated Press report, although the Taliban has fled, the country’s "sharia," or Islamic law, remains in place. Fazel Hadi Shinwari, recently appointed chief of Afghanistan’s Supreme Court, said gays can still be punished by being hurled from a high place or having a wall toppled onto them. Other Islamic laws that have remained include death by stoning for those convicted of adultery; Shinwari added that such punishments would only be carried out following a detailed legal process during which the accused can contest the charges and appeal for: clemency and measures such as paying restitution could avoid harsh sentences. "We will not be like the Taliban," Shinwari said. "They used to hold one quick hearing, with no lawyers or witnesses, take the person away to the stadium and carry out the sentence in front of everyone. That was wrong. That blackened the name of Islam."

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