Rights Group: Afghan Government Should Commute Death Sentence

Posted July 18th, 2012 at 4:30 am (UTC-5)
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A top human rights group says Afghanistan's government should commute the death sentence of an Afghan soldier convicted of killing five French soldiers earlier this year.

Human Rights Watch said Wednesday France should make a formal request to the Afghan government to commute the sentence.

The group noted that France has abolished the death penalty and has campaigned globally for its abolition.

A Human Rights Watch official called the death penalty an “act of cruelty” that should not be imposed even in a “heinous crime” such as this one.

On Tuesday, an Afghan military court ordered the soldier, Abdul Sabor, to be hanged for killing the five French soldiers in an attack during a joint training operation in January.

The shooting in eastern Kapisa province killed four soldiers and wounded 15 others, including one who later died from his wounds.

The incident helped push French President Francois Hollande to accelerate the withdrawal of his country's combat troops from the NATO-led coalition in Afghanistan.

The French force, which is the fifth largest in the coalition, is due to be out of the country by the end of this year.