Three more killed in Bangladesh as war-crime protests continue

Dhaka: At least three people, including two teenagers, were killed as violence rocked Bangladesh for the third day today as the death toll rose to 49 in clashes that erupted after a top leader of fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami was sentenced to death for “crimes against humanity” during the 1971 liberation war.

Bangladesh police opened fire at Jamaat-e-Islami protesters, killing three people outside the port city of Chittagong.

Two persons, including a teenage boy, were killed in a gunfight between Jamaat and Shibir activists and law enforcers in Satkania area in the morning, the Daily Star reported.

In Jaldhaka area, police opened fire to disperse unruly protesters leading to the death of 15-year-old Atiqul Islam.

With violence showing no signs of abating, paramilitary border guards have been deployed across the country to beef up security and ease tension that has gripped the nation.

Violence broke out after 73-year-old Delwar Hossain Sayedee, vice-president of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), was sentenced to death by International Crimes Tribunal on Thursday.

Meanwhile, five students of North South University (NSU) were arrested last night in connection with the killing of blogger Ahmed Rajib Haidar. Rajib, a blogger and activist of Shahbagh movement, was brutally killed by miscreants in the capital’s Mirpur area on February 15.

At least 46 people were killed in rioting till yesterday triggered by the death sentence to Sayedee, who was found guilty of eight counts out of 20, involving rape, mass killings and atrocities during the 1971 freedom war against Pakistan.

Officials said that law enforcement agencies appeared to be the prime target of the right-wing JI activists. The tense situation prompted local authorities to enforce ban on gathering of more than four people under section 144 of Criminal Procedure Code in troubled areas, five northwestern and one southwestern district, said to be JI strongholds.

Many people, including policemen, were injured when the supporters of Jamaat-e-Islami and its student wing Islami Chhatra Shibir clashed with police and ruling party men in different locations in the country.

Source: Deccan Chronicle

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