Cherie Blair visits B'desh SC as Hasina's legal team expert

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Dhaka, Apr 24 (UNI) Cherie Blair, wife of former British prime minister Tony Blair, visited Bangladeshi Supreme Court as a consultant to detained former premier Sheikh Hasina's legal team.

Ms Blair, a barrister, visited the apex court yesterday to observe the appeal proceedings of a graft case against Ms Hasina.

She observed the government appeal against the High Court verdict that cancelled the Tk 3 crore extortion case filed by businessman Azam J Chowdhury against Ms Hasina, the Daily Star reported.

Barrister Azmalul Hossain said after the hearing, ''Cherie Blair was my colleague. She is visiting Bangladesh on my personal invitation. Politics has nothing to do with her visit.'' Ms Blair also attended two press conferences, where she said she wanted to observe the judicial proceedings and the human rights situation in Bangladesh, which were her special areas of interest as a lawyer.

''I was invited here to give an opinion on how laws here comply with international human rights laws and conventions,'' she said.

Ms Blair said Bangladesh's constitution contains principles that comply with international human rights standards. ''It is important to make sure that these principles are not just on paper but are in practice,'' she added.

She said the judiciary was adequate to defuse the complaints about Ms Hasina's trial. ''I am sure judges in Bangladesh will uphold their own positions and duties to the rule of law,'' she said.

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