Bangladesh ex-minister gets death sentence for war crimes

Former Bangladeshi minister gets death sentence for war crimes committed during 1971 war of independence

Bangladesh ex-minister gets death sentence for war crimes

World Bulletin / News Desk

A former Bangladeshi minister has been sentenced to death after being found guilty of war crimes committed during Bangladesh’s war of independence in 1971. 

Syed Mohammad Kaiser was found guilty of 14 of the 16 charges against him by the International Crimes Tribunal -- a domestic court. Kaiser was a former leader of the Jatiya Party, which is now in coalition with the ruling Awami League party. 

The death penalty was awarded for seven of the charges against Kaiser, who was a leader of the Muslim League during the 1971 war for independence from Pakistan. 

The tribunal has previously handed down 13 verdicts, seven of which were against current leaders of the Jamaat-e-Islamic party, two against former members of the party and the other two from the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party. 

Five of the Jamaat-e-Islami leaders were given death sentences, with the first execution, of Abdul Quader Mollah, carried out in December 2013. Another leader, Mohammad Kamaruzzaman, is awaiting execution after his final appeal was rejected in November. 

The International Crimes Tribunal was set up in 2009 in Bangladesh to investigate and prosecute suspects who committed crimes against humanity - including killings, rape and the destruction of entire villages - in 1971 and who collaborated with the then Pakistan army.

According to Bangladesh's official figures, there were 3 million people killed during the war. 

Some international observers and human rights groups have criticized the tribunal, claiming not all suspects were given fair trials. 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 23 Aralık 2014, 16:31