This just in:
An Afghan bill allowing a husband to starve his wife if she refuses to have sex has been published in the official gazette and become law.A referendum is being organised by citizens opposed to the law.
The original bill caused outrage earlier this year, forcing Afghan President Hamid Karzai to withdraw it.
But critics say the amended version of the law remains highly repressive.
They accuse Mr Karzai of selling out Afghan women for the sake of conservative Shia support at next week’s presidential election.
Karzai said today:
“I’ve always argued that if the law doesn’t work we will change it. If an overwhelming bulk of Afghans vote no then what that should do, I think, is give Parliament the strength of courage to change the law if it starts not working,” he told media.
Karzai said the Government had other priorities.
“We have a Parliament that has a certain number of sitting days, we have a law that at this point no one has starved a wife under, the country also needs to decide what do they want me and the Government focused on,” he told Breakfast on TV One.