Kabul, Afghanistan An Afghan judge held firm Friday in the face of international demands to reconsider the charges against an Afghan man who faces a possible death sentence for converting from Islam to Christianity - and reports emerged that the man might be freed soon.
But pressure against the case has been building, and the Afghan government may be rethinking the charges against Abdul Rahman. A government official and MSNBC said Friday that Rahman may be freed within the next few days.
"He could be released soon," an Afghan government official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to comment on the case to the media.
MSNBC, citing an Afghan diplomatic official it did not identify, said Rahman, 41, could be released Monday. The British Broadcasting Corp. said government officials were meeting today to discuss the case.
Senior clerics in the Afghan capital have voiced strong support for prosecuting Rahman and again warned Friday they would incite people to kill him unless he reverted to Islam.
Rahman faces the death penalty under Afghanistan's Islamic laws for converting 16 years ago while working as a medical aid worker for an international Christian group helping Afghan refugees in Pakistan.
Diplomats have said the Afghan government is searching for a way to drop the case.