Bangladesh: Riot run ahead of war crimes verdict

  • AFP, Dhaka
  • |
  • Updated: Jul 15, 2013 01:30 IST

Clashes erupted in Bangladesh on Sunday between police and supporters of the country’s biggest Islamic party ahead of a court verdict against a top Islamist  for allegedly masterminding atrocities during the 1971 liberation war against Pakistan.

Some 400 Jamaat-e-Islami activists burnt a police van and hurled crude bombs in the capital Dhaka, police said, to protest what they say are false charges against Ghulam Azam, 90, who could face the death penalty if convicted by the war crimes court on Monday.

Previous sentences by the controversial court sparked the country’s worst political violence since independence. A police officer was seriously injured in the latest clashes after being hit by a rock, assistant police commissioner Saifur Rahman told AFP.

Azam was the head of the Jamaat-e-Islami party during the war in which the government says millions were killed, many by the militias he allegedly helped create to support the Pakistani army.

 

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