Bangladesh rejects Turkey request not to execute 91-year old leader

Some reports say Bangladesh plans to execute former leader of Jamaat-e-Islami, Ghulam Azam, will be executed in 26 March 2013.

Bangladesh rejects Turkey request not to execute 91-year old leader

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkish President Abdullah Gul's letter to Bangladesh President Zillur Rahman requesting 91-year old Islamic leader not to be executed for the sake of peace in the society has created diplomatic tension between the two countries.

Some reports say Bangladesh plans to execute former leader of Jamaat-e-Islami, Ghulam Azam, will be executed in 26 March 2013.

Gul reportedly requested clemency for former Jamaat-e-Islami chief Ghulam Azam and the other accused.

Tension intensified as Ankara summoned Bangladesh Ambassador to Turkey Md Zulfiqur Rahman, a day after Dhaka summoned Turkish Ambassador in Bangladesh Mehmet Vakur Erkul on Wednesday.

The three-judge International Crimes Tribunal-1, set up to deal with crimes against humanity during the 1971 War of Independence, has indicted 91-year old leader for five charges including incitement, conspiracy and abetment. Gul's letter comes after Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu assigned envoy to Dhaka to follow the issue.

"Too old to be executed"

The foreign ministry sources told the Daily Star that content of the December 23 letter from the Turkish president is "not acceptable" and it is a "clear interference" in the internal affairs of Bangladesh.

Gul said the accused leaders of Jamaat-e-Islami are too old to stand trial and apprehended that it might cause a civil war in Bangladesh, according to the paper.

Another issue is the visit to with leaders of BNP and Jamaat and others as well as its visit to the court by a 14-member delegation of Turkish NGO Cansuyu Aid and Solidarity Association from December 20 to 24 which Dhaka accuses them of "hiding inappropriate activities".

Sources said the Turkish president in his one-page letter, written in Turkish language and attached with English translation, requested Zillur "not to give death sentence to Ghulam Azam and other Jamaat leaders."

President Gul said they came to know former Jamaat chief Ghulam Azam is being tried at the International Crimes Tribunal. It is learnt that this 91-year-old leader might be sentenced to death. Some other elderly leaders are also facing trial, which is a matter of great concern.

According to the Turkish president, if these leaders are punished, it might affect Bangladesh's socio-economic advancement and cause social instability and bloodshed.

Bangladesh’s largest Islamic party staged rallies against trials with police reportedly using live ammunition against the protesters. At least one person has been killed and scores injured and detained by police.

Last Mod: 31 Aralık 2012, 15:07
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