Grassroots-level leaders of the Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami on Friday asked the leaders of the party to ensure ‘legal protection’ against the government’s move to initiate trial of war criminals.
When asked if the members of the central Shura Majlish had discussed the parliament’s decision to hold ‘immediate trial of war criminals’, a central secretary admitted, ‘A number of delegates raised the issue. They advised the concerned Jamaat leaders to go for legal protection.’
An assistant secretary general of the party confirmed the secretary’s remarks. ‘They said the government must bring “genuine war criminals including Pakistani and Indian citizens” to book,’ he said.
They said this on the last day of the two-day meeting of the Shura Majlish at Jamaat’s Al-Falah auditorium in Maghbazar, chaired by Matiur Rahman Nizami, amir of the party.
Most of the members of the 265-strong highest policy-making body attended the meeting.
The Jatiya Sangsad on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution, backed by Awami League and its allies, to initiate the ‘immediate’ trial of war criminals.
Jamaat opposed Bangladesh’s War of Independence and many of its leaders, including Matiur Rahman Nizami and secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojahid, were allegedly involved in heinous war crimes.
‘We are observing the situation,’ said Mojahid.
He claimed that there are no war criminals in Jamaat.
The party’s central executive committee held an emergency meeting on Friday evening to assess the situation and frame a strategy, according to Jamaat insiders.
On April 3, 2008, research organisation War Crimes Fact Finding Committee made public a list of 1,597 alleged war criminals responsible for mass killing, rape and other atrocities during the War of Liberation.
On November 5, the Sector Commanders Forum made public its preliminary list of 50 alleged war criminals.
Both the lists include Jamaat leaders Nizami, Mojahid and assistant secretary general Muhammad Kamaruzzaman.
Source: New Age