British Muslim leader faces war crimes charges in Bangladesh

One of Britain's most important Muslim leaders is to be charged with war crimes, investigators and officials have told The Sunday Telegraph: Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin, director of Muslim spiritual care provision in the NHS, a trustee of the major British charity Muslim Aid and a central figure in setting up the Muslim Council of Britain, fiercely denies any involvement in a number of abductions and "disappearances" during Bangladesh's independence struggle in the 1970s. He says the claims are "politically-motivated" and false. However, Mohammad Abdul Hannan Khan, the chief investigator for the country's International Crimes Tribunal, said: "There is prima facie evidence of Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin being involved in a series of killings of intellectuals. "We have made substantial progress in the case against him. There is no chance that he will not be indicted and prosecuted. We expect charges in June." Mr Mueen-Uddin could face the death penalty if convicted.


Bangladesh's Law and Justice Minister, Shafique Ahmed, said: "He was an instrument of killing intellectuals. He will be charged, for sure." For 25 years after independence from Britain, the country now known as Bangladesh was part of Pakistan, even though the two halves were a thousand miles apart with India between them. In 1971, Bangla resentment at the "colonial" nature of Pakistani rule broke out into a full-scale revolt. Hundreds of thousands of civilians were massacred by Pakistani troops. Mr Mueen-Uddin, then a journalist on the Purbodesh newspaper in Dhaka, was a member of a fundamentalist party, Jamaat-e-Islami, which supported Pakistan in the war. In the closing days, as it became clear that Pakistan had lost, he is accused of being part of a collaborationist Bangla militia, the Al-Badr Brigade, which rounded up, tortured and killed prominent citizens to deprive the new state of its intellectual and cultural elite.

The sister-in-law of one such victim, Dolly Chaudhury, claims to have identified Mr Mueen-Uddin as one of three men who abducted her husband, Mufazzal Haider Chaudhury, a prominent scholar of Bengali literature, on the night of 14 December 1971. "I was able to identify one [of the abductors], Mueen-Uddin," she said in video testimony, seen by The Sunday Telegraph, which will form part of the prosecution case. "He was wearing a scarf but my husband pulled it down as he was taken away. When he was a student, he often used to go to my brother in law's house. My husband, my sister-in-law, my brother-in-law, we all recognised that man." Professor Chaudhury was never seen again.

Also among the as yet untested testimony is the widow of another victim, who claims that Mr Mueen-Uddin was in the group that abducted her husband, Sirajuddin Hussain, another journalist, from their home on the night of 10 December 1971. "There was no doubt that he was the person involved in my husband's abduction and killing," said Noorjahan Seraji. One of the other members of the group, who was caught soon afterwards, allegedly gave Mr Mueen-Uddin's name in his confession. Another reporter on Purbodesh, Ghulam Mostafa, also disappeared...
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/bangladesh/9204831/Leading-British-Muslim-leader-faces-war-crimes-charges-in-Bangladesh.html

Popular posts from this blog

History Archive: Communist Party of India's resolution on Pakistan and National Unity, September 1942

The Almond Trees by Albert Camus (1940)

The Assassination of Mahatma Gandhi: Inquiry Commission Report (1969)

STATEMENT BY ASHOKA UNIVERSITY FACULTY - March 18, 2021

The Republic of Silence – Jean-Paul Sartre on The Aftermath of War and Occupation (September 1944)

Alexandre Koyré: The Political Function of the Modern Lie (1945) /John Keane: lying, journalism and democracy

Covid County Simulator (valid for the USA, but with lessons for the world at large)