Apparently, a more tolerant version of the Muslim Holy book amounts to an insult worthy of execution.
More than 1,000 university students demonstrated in eastern Afghanistan Sunday to demand the death penalty for an official accused of insulting the Koran, police and witnesses said.
The attorney general's spokesman, former journalist Mohammad Ghaws Zalmai, was arrested at the Pakistan border a week ago trying to flee after being accused of misinterpreting the Muslim holy book in a new translation.
"Death to Ghaws Zalmai!" shouted the angry mob in the eastern town of Jalalabad, an AFP reporter in the crowd said. "We want him hanged!"
"He has insulted our religion and must be killed," the group said.
The demonstrators blocked a main road linking the eastern town to the capital, Kabul, for several hours. Dozens of police officers were on hand to prevent violence.
The conservative parliament last week banned Zalmai from leaving the country days after the distribution of about 6,000 copies of his Dari-language translation, called "Koran-i-Pak" or "clean Koran".