Due to a national hartal our researchers were unable to attend proceedings today. Our coverage is therefore gathered from media sources and conversations with the Prosecution and Defense.
Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:
- Chief Prosecutor vs. Ali Ahsan Muhammad Mujahid
- Pre-trial of Chowdhury Moinuddin and Ashrafuzzaman Khan
The Prosecution continued Closing Arguments in the Mujahid case. They began addressing the evidentiary aspects of the case and Charges 1 and 2.
Under Charge 1 Mujahid is accused of the abduction and subsequent murder of Mr Seraj Uddin Hossain, who was the then Executive Editor of the Daily Ittefaq. Mujahid is charged with abduction and murder as Crimes Against Humanity, under section 3(2)(a) of the ICT Act. Prosecution witness 4 testified in support of the charge. It is additionally alleged that Mr. Chowdhury Moinuddin and Mr Ashrafuzzaman Khan, who have recently been separately indicted, partnered with Mujahid, members of Al-Badr and the Pakistani Army in the commission of these crimes.
Charge 2 alleges that Mujahid commited persecution as a Crime Against Humanity and Genocide in conjunction with attacks committed in Baidyadangi, Majhidangi and Baladanga. He is charged under section 3(2)(a) and Section 3(2)(c) of the ICT Act. Prosecution witnesses 6, 8, 9, 10 and 11 supported the allegations within Charge 2. It is alleged that Mujahid committed the alleged crimes with the assistance and participation of Abul Kalam Azad, Hammad Maolana, Gofur Rajakar, Jahangir Razakar, Kalu Bihari and other members of the Pakistani Army, the Razakars, Al-Badr, the Peace Committee and members of the Bihari community.
Chief Prosecutor vs. Chowdhury Moinuddin and Chief Prosecutor vs. Ashrafuzzaman Khan
The Tribunal also addressed the cases against Chowdhury Moinuddin and Ashrafuzzaman Khan. The Police submitted an official report stating that they had been unable to arrest the accused because they are out of country, Moinuddin residing in the United Kingdom and Ashrafuzzaman in the United States. The Tribunal then issued an order to the Office of the Registrar requesting them to publish an advertisement in two widely circulated national dailies asking the two Accused to appear before the Tribunal within 10 days of its publication, failing which a trial-in-absentia will be conducted.
Brussels based legal expert Ahmed Ziauddin who allegedly conducted inappropriate Skype conversations regarding the proceedings with the former Chairman of Tribunal 1, submitted his response to contempt proceedings against him in compliance with the Tribunal 2’s order of 3 January 2013. The submission was received by the Registrar of the ICT through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The matter will soon appear in the Daily Cause List of the Tribunal for further order.