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War crimes tribunal indicts 5 Patuakhali Razakars

DHAKA, March 8, 2017 (BSS) - The International Crimes Tribunal (ICT)-1 today indicted five alleged Razakars from Patuakhali, framing two charges of crimes against humanity against them.

"Justice Anwarul Haque, chairman of the three-member panel of the ICT-1, passed the indictment order this morning," prosecutor Rezia Sultana Chemon told BSS.

"The two charges have been framed against Esahaq Shikder, Abdul Goni Hawlader, Md Awal alias Awal Moulavi, Abdus Sattar Pyada and Solaiman Mridha for abduction, confinement, torture and rape of 15 women, confinement, torture and murder of 17 people," Chemon added.

After reading out the charges, the tribunal asked the accused whether they will plead guilty or not. In response, all the accused pleaded not guilty. The tribunal then set April 26 for submitting opening statement by the prosecution and examination of its witnesses.

The tribunal on October 1, 2015, showed these five arrested in the crimes against humanity case accepting a plea of the prosecution.

The prosecution on October 13, 2016, submitted the formal charge in the case, pressing two charges on six counts of crimes against humanity including genocide, murder and rape against them.

Indictment hearing in the case was held on January 9, 2017.

According to the prosecution, of the five, Esahaq was the member of Peace Committee while the rest of the accused were members of local Razakar Bahini in 1971.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)