Bangladesh war crime court indicts leaders of al-Badr militia



Dhaka: A Bangladeshi war crimes tribunal on Thursday ordered the arrest of two fugitive collaborators of Pakistani army during the country's 1971 liberation war for their alleged role in the murder of 18 leading intellectuals.

Justice Obaidul Hassan-led International Crimes Tribunal issued the warrants of arrest after considering the charges levelled against former al-Badr leaders Ashrafuzzaman Khan and Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin by the prosecution.

The tribunal has sought a report from authorities by May 12 as to whether the two have been arrested or not, Bdnews24 reported.

Prosecutor Mokhlesur Rahman Badal brought the charges on April 28 after Tribunal prosecutor Saidur Rahman filed his probe report on April 25.

The two have been charged with murdering 18 intellectuals’ nine Dhaka University teachers, six journalists and three doctors between December 10-14, 1971. A total of 16 charges of crimes against humanity have been brought against them under five categories.

The charges said that the al Badr was "put in charge" to kill the intellectuals by the Pakistan military, that Khan was the 'chief executor' with Chowdhury 'operation in-charge'.

Both were said to be active member of Islami Chhatra Sangha the student wing of fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami in 1971. The Jamaat opposed Bangladesh's independence and sided with the Pakistani war effort in 1971.

In March 2010, Bangladesh government set up the tribunal to try the collaborators. Up to three million people were killed during the liberation war.

PTI