DHAKA, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) — The International Crimes Tribunal in Bangladesh has sentenced two to death and three others to life in prison for their crimes committed during the country’s war of independence in 1971.
The death-row inmates are Ujayer Ahmed Chowdhury, 63, and Nesar Ali, 75, while Yunus Ahmed, 71, Samsul Hossain Tarafder, 65, and Mobarak Mia, 66, were awarded lift imprisonment.
The International Crimes Tribunal, led by Chairman Justice Md Shahinur Islam, found the convicts guilty of the charges brought against them.
The charges include rape, murder, confinement and torture of unarmed civilians during the nine-month war in 1971.
Condemned Yunus and Ujayer, who are in police custody, were taken to the tribunal for verdict delivery Wednesday morning.
The remaining three of the accused have been absconding.
The tribunal directed the secretary of Bangladesh’s Ministry of Home Affairs and police chief for measures to detain the three fugitives convicted of war crimes.
After returning to power in January 2009, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, daughter of Bangladesh’s independence hero Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, established the first tribunal in March 2010, almost 40 years after the 1971 war.
Five Jamaat-e-Islami party leaders – Mir Quasem Ali, Motiur Rahman Nizami, Abdul Quader Molla, Muhammad Kamaruzzaman and Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid – have already been executed for 1971 war crimes.
Apart from them, opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) leader Salaudin Quader Chowdhury was executed for war crimes.
Both BNP and Jamaat have dismissed the court as a government “show trial,” saying it is a domestic set-up without the oversight or involvement of the United Nations.
Muslim-majority Bangladesh was called East Pakistan until 1971. The government of Hasina said about 3 million people were killed in the war. Enditem