Courts under the Taliban regime in Afghanistan follow Sharia law.

The picture shows the scene of the Criminal Court in Ghazni Province in eastern Afghanistan.


(CNA) An elderly man sentenced to death for murder knelt before a turbaned judge and pleaded for his life in a small room of an appeals court in eastern Afghanistan's Ghazni province.

Agence France-Presse reported that the 75-year-old man admitted that he shot and killed relatives.

He said it was out of revenge after rumors that the relative had sex with his daughter-in-law.

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The elderly man faces a public execution by relatives of the victim under the eye-for-an-eye punishment under Sharia law, which the Taliban regime's supreme leader first ordered in force last month.

"A reconciliation has been reached between our families," the old man pleaded.

"I have witnesses who can prove that we have reached an agreement on compensation."

AFP gained rare access to the courts in Ghazni to see how sharia justice has been administered since the Taliban returned to power last August.

Ghazni officials avoided the court's formal Western-style courtroom, instead conducting proceedings in a small room with participants sitting on a carpeted floor.

The young judge, Mohammad Mobin, listened impassively, then asked a few questions.

He then ordered the court to wait a few days to give the old man time to find witnesses who would prove that the families of both parties agreed with his story.

"If he can prove his claim, the sentence can be amended," Mobin said.

"If there is no (reconciliation), it is certain that the penalty of retaliation (qisas) (an eye for an eye) stipulated in Sharia law will apply."