Dhaka, Dec.14: Additional Attorney General and prosecutor, International War Crimes Tribunal of Bangladesh, Saif-ul-Islam, has hailed the execution of Jamaat-e-Islami leader, Abdul Quader Mollah, accused of war crimes committed during the 1971 war of independence from Pakistan.
The decision to hang Mollah, a senior figure in the Jamaat-e-Islami party that is a key part of the opposition coalition, drew widespread condemnation from political allies and international human rights groups.
But, many citizens celebrated the first ever execution of a Bangladesh war criminal, which took place late on December 12 at the Dhaka Central Jail.
Islam said: “As a prosecutor of this International Crimes Tribunal, I am very particularly; we think that we have done the process and the trial process very fairly. We have followed the international procedures.”
Mollah, dubbed the “Butcher of Mirpur” in Bangladesh for his part in hundreds of killings 42 years ago, was buried in the early hours of Friday in his home village in southern Faridpur District.
In the latest violence, Jamaat supporters set fire to vehicles and houses, looted shops, set off crude bombs and blocked roads in several parts of the country.
Commenting on the trial, Islam said: “It was totally an open trial and justice has been done to the victims, those who have lost lives, during these atrocities done by these perpetrators.”
Mollah’s execution has worsened tensions that were already running high, threatening to cripple Bangladesh’s economy, notably its USD 22-billion garment industry.
There has been almost daily unrest in the impoverished nation of 160 million people since last month’s announcement of parliamentary elections on January 5.
Islam also said that all the judicial steps were followed during Mollah’s execution.
“It was correctly done and all the judicial steps and the court trial process have been exhausted successfully to attain complete justice,” Islam also said.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her ruling Awami League are determined to go ahead with the vote, but the opposition, led by Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) head Begum Khaleda Zia, says it will not participate unless an interim government is installed and Hasina steps down.
Senior leaders from the Awami League and BNP-led opposition were expected to meet later on Friday for a third round of talks to break the political deadlock. (ANI)