A domestic tribunal in Bangladesh, International Crimes Tribunal (ICT)1, earlier today convicted Maulana Delwar Hussain Sayeedi (Sayeedi) – a prominent scholar and religious preacher, of crimes against humanity. The ICT1 sentenced him to death on 10 counts including charges of mass killing, genocide and rape.
We at ReclaimBangladesh deeply condemn the death sentence and call for an immediate rejection of this decision. We note with regret that the controversial tribunal set off on a flawed legal basis. It denies the defendant’s basic legal rights, even preventing their lawyers from presenting an effective defence.
Our greatest concern in the Sayeedi case is that the former chairman of the ICT1 was caught red-handed colluding with the government and an Nirmul (Annihilation) Committee activist to cook up charges and predetermine the trial’s outcome. Outrageously, the judges who delivered the current judgement were not fully involved in the case, did not hear all the evidence live and could not morally issue the verdict.
We call upon the Bangladesh government to recognise the gross miscarriage of justice in this case and the strife it is causing across the country. The death toll has risen above 50 people, each of whom we mourn.
We urge the international and transnational community to demand that the Bangladesh government takes immediate steps to bring sanity, restore order and respect fundamental human rights.
We call on the press and the people of Bangladesh to show courage and introspection to view and engage with events in an unbiased manner.
We pray that these troubling times bring out the best qualities in each and every one of us.
Talha Ahmad +44 (0)7923 353555