World Bulletin/News Desk
Another top leader of Bangladesh's main party was sentenced to death for war crimes Sunday just days after a tribunal awarded the same penalty to the chief of the organization.
The International Crimes Tribunal, which is a domestic court, convicted Jamaat-e-Islami's Mir Quasem Ali on eight of 14 charges he faced.
Ali was accused of mass murder, abduction, confinement and torture in the war that led to Bangladesh's independence from Pakistan in 1971.
He is considered the top financier and one of the most influential leaders of the party.
The Jamaat-e-Islami is already on strike in Bangladesh in protest against the death sentence handed down to its party chief Motiur Rahman Nizami on October 29.
The 48 hour-long strike came into effect Sunday and was expected to remain in place until Monday.
Jamaat's leader Mujibur Rahman had warned of another series of nationwide strikes at a rally in Natore Saturday. The party has now called for a nationwide strike Thursday.
Other leaders convicted for war crimes include Abdul Qader Molla, who was executed in December 2013. Delwar Hossain Sayeedi was also awarded death, but his sentence was later converted to life imprisonment.
The International Crimes Tribunal was established in 2009 to investigate war crimes committed in 1971. Bangladesh’s opposition parties and international organizations such as the Human Rights Watch have criticized the process and expressed concerns about the accused not getting a fair trial.
Critics also say the government has abused the process as a political tool to target the two biggest opposition parties, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and Jamaat-e-Islami.
Last year, the Jamaat was banned from contesting January's general election that was won by Hasina's Awami League party amid boycott from the BNP.
This year, more than 100 people have been killed in protests over the tribunal's verdicts.
Last Mod: 02 Kasım 2014, 11:28