Saturday, May 01, 2010

Meeting with Bangladesh LGRD Minister

show details 8:22 AM (2 hours ago)

International Bangladesh Foundation

Patron Lord Dholakia Chair Lord Avebury

315 Collier Row Lane, Romford, Essex RM5 3ND

Tel: 01708 448055 Fax 01708 470 256

30 May 2010


Bangladesh has made all preparations for war crimes trial: Syed Ashraf

Syed Ashraful Islam, LGRD minister, who is here in London on a short visit, met Lord Avebury, Vice Chair of UK’s All Party Parliamentary Group on Human Rights, Chairman of Bangladesh International Foundation & Co-Chair, Chittagong Hill Tracts Commission on Friday 30 May 2010 to discuss issues of mutual interest.

He informed Lord Avebury that Bangladesh has made all preparations to seek justice for the victims of Bangladesh War of 1971.

Syed Ashraful Islam said in order to initiate trial against those accused of war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide, torture, rape and murder of civilians, tribunal and prosecution teams have been established. Prosecution team has already started its work.

Lord Avebury supported the initiative taken by the government to try the war criminals but enquired about concerns raised about the trial process in a report by the International Bar Association (IBA) to the Parliamentary Hyman Rights Group Syed Ashraf said the Bangladesh government had amended the 1973 Act to bring it into conformity with international judicial norms including rights of appeal and open and transparent court proceedings. The Government had ratified the Rome Statute on the International Criminal Court to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression, but this applied only to crimes committed since the Rome Statute came into force such as the attempted assassination of Sheikh Hasina. Syed Ashraful Islam said members of the IBA would be welcome to visit Bangladesh.

On Chittagong Hill Tracts Syed Ashraf said the he had recently visited Chittagong to ensure the peaceful coexistence of both indigenous population and Bengalis. The Rohingya issue was also discussed. It was agreed that the land issue was critical, and Lord Avebury re-emphasised the conclusion of the CHT Commission in their last report, that the settlement of individual disputes between holders of land by traditional communal title and those who were later granted individual plots by District Commissioners should be settled before the CHT Land Commission launched its general survey.

The meeting was attended by Joint Secretaries of International Bangladesh Foundation Sujit Sen & Ansar Ahmed Ullah, human rights activists Sunahwar Ali from Bangladesh and Raktim Das from the Russian Federation.

Syed Ashraful Islam formally invited Lord Avebury to Bangladesh who gladly accepted the invitation, but said it would have to be later than his next visit as vice-chair of the CHT Commission in the summer.


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