Authorities in Bangladesh have executed Motiur Rahman Nizami, the chief of Bangladesh’s largest Islamist party, for his role in genocide and other serious crimes during the country’s independence war against Pakistan in 1971.
Minutes after Tuesday midnight, Bangladesh home minister Asaduzzaman Khan said that Jamaat-e-Islami party’s Nizami was hanged inside Dhaka central jail amid tight security at 12:10 am.
The execution came after the country’s Supreme Court upheld the death penalty ruling made against him by a special tribunal.
The 73-year-old is the fifth man to be hanged as three other senior colleagues from his Islamist party and another senior leader of main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party led by former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia had faced the gallows earlier.
Pakistani soldiers aided by local collaborators killed 3 million people, raped 200,000 women and forced some 10 million people flee the country during the nine months of war in then east Pakistan, now Bangladesh.
Sheikh Maruf Hasan, a deputy inspector general of police, told reporters a few minutes before Tuesday midnight that Nizami’s body would be handed over to his family for burial in his ancestral home in northwestern Pabna district.
Earlier on Tuesday evening, Nizami’s family members met him as he refused to seek presidential clemency, the last legal process a condemned man can seek.