Amir is sentenced to death for espionage on January 9th 2012. He is granted no significant participation in his trial. In retrospect this seems like a ploy to increase his value in the diplomatic chess match between our two nations.
But this ‘ploy’ must have seemed quite serious and horrible to his family. To be told your brother, son, uncle is to be killed for a crime he did not commit. 
How bleak a time it must have been.