One dead, many wounded in Bangladesh Jamaat protests

At least 30 people were hurt when riot police broke up an anti-government protest in the Bangladesh capital Dhaka, witnesses said.

One dead, many wounded in Bangladesh Jamaat protests


An activist died and more than 100 were wounded when Bangladesh riot police broke up anti-government protests across the country on Wednesday, police and witnesses said, with demonstrators calling for early elections.

The activist died in a stampede when police clashed with demonstrators in Naogaon town, 250 km (160 miles) northwest of the capital, Dhaka.

Police said the cause of death was a heart attack, but the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) blamed police for causing the stampede.

Hundreds of protesters from the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) of former prime minister Begum Khaleda Zia and its main ally Jamaat-e-Islami formed human chains in the capital and elsewhere in Bangladesh.

At least 30 people were hurt in Dhaka, and the rest in several cities and district headquarters including Chittagong port, where police arrested nearly 100 activists.

BNP Secretary-General Khandaker Delwar Hossain said police used force to halt the protests against recent arrests of dozens of BNP and Jamaat leaders calling for an early election.

"The autocratic government is out to deny our democratic rights," Delwar said. "This will only compel us to call for more protests."

Police held the BNP activists following a countrywide strike on June 27 and later arrested three top Jamaat leaders on charges of obstructing police, inciting violence and murder, as well as acts of sedition.

Jamaat denies the charges, and says the government is trying to "crush" anyone who speaks out against it.

Many Bangladeshis accuse Jamaat of opposing the country's 1971 independence from Pakistan and its leaders of helping the Pakistani army in acts of genocide during the war.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 08 Temmuz 2010, 13:35