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Bangladesh executes opposition chiefs

November 21, 2015 5:24 pm

Two Bangladesh opposition leaders have been executed for war crimes committed during the 1971 independence struggle against Pakistan.

Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury and Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid were hanged in Dhaka’s central jail.

They were convicted of genocide and rape – charges they denied.

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Chowdhury has been an influential politician – he was elected MP six times. Mujahid was a top leader of Bangladesh’s largest Islamist party.

They were hanged after President Abdul Hamid rejected appeals for clemency by the two men, the home minister said.

The Supreme Court upheld their sentences earlier this month.

Chowdhury was the most senior leader of the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party to be sentenced for crimes against humanity.

Two years ago, a special war crimes tribunal found him guilty of nine out of 23 charges including genocide, arson and persecuting people on religious and political grounds.

Mujahid was the secretary-general of Jamaat-e-Islami. He was sentenced to death in July 2013.

He was accused of responsibility for the killings of a number of pro-independence Bangladeshi leaders and intellectuals.

The tribunal found him guilty of five charges, including abduction and murder.

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