Ex-Jamayat member Mueen-Uddin faces war crime chrages

E-Bangladesh

E-Bangladesh

E-Bangladesh is a News/Headlines service and a group blog aimed at bringing the news and analysis from Bangladesh to its readers.

“I was able to identify one [of the abductors], Mueen-Uddin,” she said in video testimony, seen by The Sunday Telegraph, which will form part of the prosecution case.

Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin, a member of Jamayat-e-Islami during the 1971 Bangladesh liberation war, faces war crime charges, reports the Telegraph on Sunday quoting the chief investigator for the International Crimes Tribunal.

Mr. Mueen, says the Telegraph, is the director of Muslim spiritual care provision in the NHS, a trustee of the major British charity Muslim Aid and a central figure in setting up the Muslim Council of Britain. He says the claims are “politically-motivated” and false.

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Mueen-Uddin with Prince Charles . image courtesy :: the Telegraph

However, the chief investigator, Mohammad Abdul Hannan Khan, said: “There is prima facie evidence of Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin being involved in a series of killings of intellectuals.

“We have made substantial progress in the case against him. There is no chance that he will not be indicted and prosecuted. We expect charges in June.”

Mr Mueen-Uddin could face the death penalty if convicted.

Bangladesh’s Law and Justice Minister, Shafique Ahmed, said: “He was an instrument of killing intellectuals. He will be charged, for sure.”

Mr Mueen-Uddin had been working as a journalist for the Purbodesh, in Dhaka. He was a member of the Jamaat-e-Islami, which supported Pakistan in the war. In the closing days, as it became clear that Pakistan had lost, he is accused of being part of a collaborationist Bangla militia, the Al-Badr Brigade, which rounded up, tortured and killed prominent citizens to deprive the new state of its intellectual and cultural elite.

The widow of one such victim, Dolly Chaudhury, claims to have identified Mr Mueen-Uddin as one of three men who abducted her husband, Mufazzal Haider Chaudhury, a prominent scholar of Bengali literature, on the night of 14 December 1971.

“I was able to identify one [of the abductors], Mueen-Uddin,” she said in video testimony, seen by The Sunday Telegraph, which will form part of the prosecution case.

“He was wearing a scarf but my husband pulled it down as he was taken away. When he was a student, he often used to go to my brother in law’s house. My husband, my sister-in-law, my brother-in-law, we all recognised that man.”
Professor Chaudhury was never seen again.

Also among the as yet untested testimony is the widow of another victim, who claims that Mr Mueen-Uddin was in the group that abducted her husband, Sirajuddin Hussain, another journalist, from their home on the night of 10 December 1971.

“There was no doubt that he was the person involved in my husband’s abduction and killing,” said Noorjahan Seraji. One of the other members of the group, who was caught soon afterwards, allegedly gave Mr Mueen-Uddin’s name in his confession.

Another reporter on Purbodesh, Ghulam Mostafa, also disappeared.

The vanished journalist’s brother, Dulu, said he appealed to Mr Mueen-Uddin for help and was taken around the main Pakistani Army detention and torture centres by Mr Mueen-Uddin. Dulu Mostafa said that Mr Mueen-Uddin appeared to be well known at the detention centres, gained easy admission to the premises and was saluted by the Pakistani guards as he entered. Ghulam was never found.

Toby Cadman, Mr Mueen-Uddin’s lawyer, said on Saturday: “No formal allegations have been put to Mr Mueen-Uddin and therefore it is not appropriate to issue any formal response. Any and all allegations that Mr Mueen-Uddin committed or participated in any criminal conduct during the Liberation War of 1971 that have been put in the past will continue to be strongly denied in their entirety.

“For the Chief Investigator to be making such public comment raises serious questions as to the integrity of the investigation. The Chief Investigator will be aware that the decision as to the bringing of charges is made by the Prosecutor and not an investigator.

“Therefore, the comments by the Chief Investigator are highly improper and serves as a further basis for raising the question as to whether a fair trial may be guaranteed before the International Crimes Tribunal in Bangladesh.”

Since moving to the UK in the early 1970s, Mr Mueen-Uddin has taken British citizenship and built a successful career as a community activist and Muslim leader.

In 1989 he was a key leader of protests against the Salman Rushdie book, The Satanic Verses.

Around the same time he helped to found the extremist Islamic Forum of Europe, Jamaat-e-Islami’s European wing, which believes in creating a sharia state in Europe and in 2010 was accused by a Labour minister, Jim Fitzpatrick, of infiltrating the Labour Party.

Until 2010 Mr Mueen-Uddin was vice-chairman of the controversial East London Mosque, controlled by the IFE, in which capacity he greeted Prince Charles when the heir to the throne opened an extension to the mosque. He was also closely involved with the Muslim Council of Britain, which has been dominated by the IFE.

He was chairman and remains a trustee of the IFE-linked charity, Muslim Aid, which has a budget of £20 million. He has also been closely involved in the Markfield Institute, the key institution of Islamist higher education in the UK.

The International Crimes Tribunal, a new body set up to try alleged “war criminals” from the 1971 war, has already begun trying some Bangladesh-based leaders of Jamaat-e-Islami.

Trials were originally supposed to start soon after the war but were cancelled by the military after a coup.

The new tribunal was welcomed by most Bangladeshis and international human rights groups as finally bringing justice and closure for the massive abuses suffered by civilians in 1971.

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E-Bangladesh is a News/Headlines service and a group blog aimed at bringing the news and analysis from Bangladesh to its readers.


One Response to “Ex-Jamayat member Mueen-Uddin faces war crime chrages”

  1. A Muslim Thinker

    The lives of Muslim should be observed and followed as in the field of
    Arafat. We are all created by ALLAH SWT. We all are sinners & ask for the forgiveness of ALLAH SWT. We cannot have enmity against any. We have to live with all as a fellow humanbeing.
    ALLAH the ALMIGHTY is the Supreme ruler of the universe & the Supreme Judge
    of the day of Judgement.
    We must love holy Prophet Mohammed(MSAS) with all Holy Prophets & saints
    & love the humanity as guided by the Holy Prophet Mohammed(MSAS)
    Thank you.

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