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Bangladesh war crimes: SC upholds death sentence for former minister

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Dhaka, June 16: Bangladesh Supreme Court on Tuesday confirmed death sentence given to leader of the fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami for war crimes.

A four member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha, confirmed the death penalty for the 67-year old Jamaat-e-Islami leader and former minister Ali Ahsan Muhammad Mujahid, bdnews24.com reported.

SC upholds death penalty for war crimes

He was associated with Al-Badr, the militia raised by Pakistan to crush the Bengali struggle for independence.
Mujahid served as the social welfare minister in Khaleda Zia's BNP-Jamaat coalition cabinet.

He has been guilty of planning and executing mass murders including those of intellectuals, scientists, academics and journalists during the war to abort Bangladesh's birth.

Bangladesh's ex-MP Abdul Jabbar sentenced to life for war crimes Bangladesh's ex-MP Abdul Jabbar sentenced to life for war crimes

This is the first time a politician is going to be executed for war crimes in Bangladesh.

The war crimes tribunal ordered him in 1971to walk the gallows on July 17, 2013 for the massacre of the intellectuals and involvement in the murder and torture of Hindus.

Out of the seven charges levelled against him, the tribunal had found him guilty on five counts. He was given the death penalty in the first, sixth and seventh charges.

Mujahid is the fourth war crimes convict whose case has been resolved by the top court after the trials were started in 2010.

The defence can ask for a review 15 days within the publication of the Supreme Court verdict. However, the court will only accept it if it considers there are chances of ‘denial of justice'. In no way will the review be equal to appeal - a point made clear in the full verdict rejecting the review of another Jamaat leader Abdul Quader Molla, the first to hang for war crimes.

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