Bangladesh Islamist, Abdul Kader Mullah hanged for war crimes

Semiu Salami
Semiu Salami
Abdul Kader Mullah

Bangladesh has executed the Islamist leader, Abdul Kader Mullah, who was convicted of atrocities in the 1971 war of independence with Pakistan.

He is the first person convicted by Bangladesh’s International Crimes Tribunal (ICT) to be executed.

The ICT was set up in 2010 to investigate abuses committed during the 1971 conflict, in which some estimate three million people were killed.

Mullah was a senior leader of the Jamaat-e-Islami party. His trial earlier in the year sparked protests from Jamaat supporters.

Four other leading figures in the party have also been convicted by the tribunal and face the death penalty.

The execution took place at Dhaka Central Jail at 22:01 local time (16:01 GMT) on Thursday evening, officials announced.

His family were allowed a final meeting with the 65-year-old and found him “calm”. “He told us that he is proud to be a martyr for the cause of the Islamic movement in the country,” his son, Hasan Jamil, told the AFP after the meeting.

Hundreds of people gathered in central Dhaka to celebrate the news of his death.

But Jamaat-e-Islami – which had called the execution politically motivated and warned it would avenge his death – called for a general strike on Sunday.

Security has been tightened in Dhaka and around the country amid fears the execution is likely to inflame tensions.

At least three people are reported to have died on Thursday in sporadic clashes between Jamaat-e-Islami supporters and security forces.

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