Bangladesh's Supreme Court has registered its opposition to military trials of paramilitary mutineers who killed dozens of army officers six months ago, the country's law minister said on Sunday.
The court action could clear the way for prosecutions to go ahead soon for those charged over the Feb. 24-25 mutiny over pay and command structure, in which irate BDR troopers killed around 80 people.
The dead in the violence at BDR headquarters in Dhaka included 57 army officers who had been placed in command of BDR units.
"The Supreme Court, responding to a reference sent to it by President Zillur Rahman, has given its opinion against trying the mutineers under military laws," Law Minister Sahfiq Ahmed told reporters.
The court formed its opinion after several days of hearings on the reference by 10 top lawyers and legal experts, he said.
The president wanted to know whether the rebel soldiers of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) border guards should be tried under civil or military rules.
The mutiny spread to 12 other towns before it was contained.
The government said it would review the court recommendations and decide on the next course of action at a multi-ministerial meeting on Monday.
However, law ministry and court officials said they expected trials to start as soon as possible under civil laws.
The army conducted its own probe into the BDR rebellion but did not officially publish its findings.
Last Mod: 13 Eylül 2009, 16:16