Crime & Justice

Bangladesh sentences 6 Islamists to death for killing LGBT activists

Dhaka, Aug 31 (EFE).- A Bangladesh court on Tuesday sentenced to death six members of a banned Islamist outfit linked to the Al-Qaeda for the killing of two LGBT rights activists in 2016.

The Dhaka Anti-Terrorism Tribunal found six of the eight accused, including armed forces’ Major Syed Ziaul Haque, guilty of the murder of activists Xulhaz Mannan and Mahbub Tonoy, prosecutor Golam Sharuar Khan told EFE.

Each convict has also been fined 50,000 taka (approximately $600) by Judge Mojibur Rahman.

At the time the sentence was handed down, only four defendants were present in the courtroom, while four others, including Ziaul, remain fugitives from justice.

Those convicted belonged to the extremist group Ansar al Islam, an extremist organization banned in 2017, which claimed responsibility for the killing of the activists on social media.

Xulhaz and Mahbub were hacked to death inside a Dhaka house on April 25, 2016, allegedly by the members of Islamist group.

According to the prosecutor, five of the convicts already face another death sentence for the murder of writer and blogger Avijit Roy and his publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan.

Roy was hacked to death in February 2015 inside a university campus in Dhaka while returning from a literary fair.

Dipan was killed in a similar manner in his office eight months later.

More than 70 people, including bloggers, thinkers, members of religious minorities, and foreigners, were killed in a series of targeted attacks in Bangladesh between 2013 and 2016. The government blamed local militant groups for the killings. EFE


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