Bangladesh court denies bail to ex-PM

A Bangladesh court ruled that a former prime minister arrested as part of the emergency government's corruption crackdown should not be released on bail, an official said.

Bangladesh court denies bail to ex-PM
A Bangladesh court ruled that a former prime minister arrested as part of the emergency government's corruption crackdown should not be released on bail, an official said.

The Supreme Court overturned a lower court order made on Monday that said Sheikh Hasina Wajed, who served as prime minister between 1996 and 2001 and faces a 435,000 dollars extortion case, should be released from detention.

"The Appellate Division (of the Supreme Court) stayed the High Court order that granted bail to detained former prime minister Sheikh Hasina," said deputy attorney general Abdur Rouf.

Lawyers for Sheikh Hasina had earlier argued that the government was not entitled to prosecute her under emergency rules currently in force in the country.

Sheikh Hasina, leader of the Awami League party, is one of 150 high-profile figures detained by the military-backed government which is waging a massive anti-graft campaign.

The government took power in January following months of political violence and has promised to clean up Bangladesh's notoriously corrupt politics before holding elections at the end of 2008.

The former prime minister has denied the charges and told a court they were aimed at forcing her out of politics. The government has rejected that claim.

Sheikh Hasina and her bitter rival Khaleda Zia, the most recently elected premier, are widely blamed for 16 years of misrule during which corruption became rampant in Bangladesh.

AFP
Last Mod: 02 Ağustos 2007, 14:15
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