1 Oct 2013

Bangladesh MP to hang for war crimes

9:58 pm on 1 October 2013

An MP for Bangladesh's main opposition party has been sentenced to death by a war crimes court for charges including murder and genocide.

The acts took place during the 1971 war of independence with Pakistan.

Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury, the first member of the Bangladesh National Party (BNP) to be tried by the court, was found guilty of nine out of 23 charges.

The BNP has consistently argued that the trial is politically motivated.

The BBC reports previous verdicts against Islamist leaders have been followed by protests.

The war crimes tribunal was set up by the Awami League-led government in 2010 and opposition parties have accused it of pursuing a political vendetta against its opponents.

Human rights groups have also said the tribunal falls short of international standards.

Security was tight in Dhaka where the verdict was being heard and also in Chittagong, the home district of Chowdhury, where there is likely to be anger at the verdict.