Bangladeshi politician arrested over 1971 war crimes | Pakistan Today

Bangladeshi politician arrested over 1971 war crimes

DHAKA – Bangladesh has arrested a leading opposition politician after he was named a suspect in a war crimes investigation into the country’s 1971 liberation struggle, police said Monday.
Abdul Alim was detained in northwestern Joypurhat district late Sunday on the orders of the International Crimes Tribunal, which was set up to prosecute war crimes committed during the bloody nine-month conflict against Pakistan.
“The tribunal has accused him of war crimes including genocide, arson and looting. He was arrested and sent to the capital Dhaka,” said local police chief Mozammal Huq.
Bangladesh’s International Crimes Tribunal was formed last year to try people suspected of atrocities during the country’s campaign for independence from Pakistan.
Bangladesh, which was known as East Pakistan until 1971, has struggled to come to terms with its bloody birth.
Alim, 80, is a member of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), the country’s main opposition. He was a minister in the first cabinet of the BNP’s founder, military strongman Ziaur Rahman, in 1976.
He is the second BNP politician to be arrested on charges of war crimes. Four leading figures of the country’s main Islamic party, Jamaat-e-Islami, have been detained on similar charges.
The BNP and Jamaat have dismissed the tribunal as a political show trial.

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