Indy continues campaign to free Afgan journalist

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The Independent today has continued with its campaign to save the life of Afghan journalism student Sayed Pervez Kambaksh who has been sentenced to death, and claims it received 13,500 signatures in one day.

The student worked as a reporter for the Jahan-I-Naw (New World) newspaper. His alleged crime was distributing a tract from a Farsi website which suggested Islamic fundamentalists who advocated the oppression of women were misrepresenting the Koran.

In a leader today, the Independent says: “Worldwide outrage over Afgan sentenced to death for reading article on women’s rights. Join the ‘Independent’ campaign now”.

The Independent reports that Presedent Karzai has been inundated by appeals against the death sentence, and that Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, David Miliband, told the paper that Britain had raised the case  with the United Nations.

Human rights groups and journalists organisations including the Committee to Protect Journalists have called for the release of Kambaksh, and a number of support groups have been set up on Facebook.

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