Bangladesh: Three awarded death penalty for 1971 war crimes
The verdict comes as the Muslim-majority nation suffers a surge in militant violence in which atheist bloggers, academics, religious minorities and foreign aid workers have been killed. In photo: Dhaka Central Jail on May 9, 2016.
The International Crimes Tribunal awarded death sentence to three and life imprisonment to five others on Monday, as they were found guilty of war crimes during Bangladesh's war of independence in 1971.
The suspects from Jamalpur region were accused of murder, abduction, torture, arson and loot. The court said in its verdict that charges against three of them have been proven beyond doubt.
"We have just received the verdict for the case concerning the crime committed in then Mahkuma (sub-division) of Jamalpur in 1971, we had eight accused persons in this case and we got 100 per cent conviction that is all eight of them are found guilty for the offences committed. However, as per as the sentencing is concerned, out of eight only three got death penalty and the rest of five got life imprisonment," said Tureen Afroz, a prosecutor, in Dhaka.
The verdict comes as the Muslim-majority nation suffers a surge in militant violence in which atheist bloggers, academics, religious minorities and foreign aid workers have been killed.
The government has blamed the increase in Islamist violence on Jamaat-e-Islami, but the group denies any link to the attacks.
In May 2016, Bangladesh hanged an Islamist party leader, Motiur Rahman Nizami, for genocide and other crimes committed during the war, drawing an angry reaction and some scattered violence from supporters.
Nizami, head of the Jamaat-e-Islami party, was executed at Dhaka Central jail just after midnight after the Bangladesh Supreme Court rejected his final plea against a death sentence imposed by a special tribunal for genocide, rape and orchestrating the massacre of intellectuals during the war.
About three million people were killed, official figures show, and thousands of women were raped, during the nine-month war, in which some factions, including the Jamaat-e-Islami, opposed the break from what was then called west Pakistan.