Two Bangladeshi opposition figures were executed last week by the Bangladeshi regime that has been internationally deplored as an act of judicial killing which is part of the ongoing persecution of political opponents.
The two prominent politicians were Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid, Secretary General of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami and Salauddin Quader Chowdhury, adviser to former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia and a member of the standing committee for the Bangladesh National Party (BNP). Both were members of parliament for several years.
The so called “International Crime Tribunals” and their proceedings have been declared against the international legal standards by almost all global institutions including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch etc.
Several prominent personalities, including a member of UK House of Lords and five members of US Congress, also stated that the tribunal’s process was “deeply flawed” and that they were concerned by reports that “democratic space is shrinking” in Bangladesh.
Stephen J. Rapp, a former American ambassador who led the State Department’s Office of Global Criminal Justice, called Mr. Chowdhury’s prosecution “particularly disturbing” because he was not allowed to call alibi witnesses, including a former U.S. ambassador, who could testify that he left Bangladesh in March 1971, and was therefore not in the country at the time of the crimes he was accused of committing.
Nearly 10,000 people have been arrested on false charges, hundreds of political activists killed in custody and on the streets, political parties effectively banned, and media restricted during the six year old persecution against opposition parties by the government.
The actions of the present government is presenting Bangladesh as a pariah state in the eyes of world opinion. The international community needs to end its silence and take some solid actions to stop this miscarriage of justice in Bangladesh.
(Courtesy ICNA News Alert)