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UN rights experts urge Bangladesh to quash death sentence imposed on opposition leader

[JURIST] UN humans rights experts on Wednesday urged [press release] the government of Bangladesh to repeal the death sentence imposed upon Mir Quasem Ali, an opposition member of the Jamaat-e-Islami party. The experts stated that "Mr. Ali's trial and appeal processes were reportedly marred with irregularities and failed to meet international standards on fair trial and due process for the imposition of the death penalty." In order to impose the death penalty, the most severe form of punishment, trials must comply with the most strict requirements set forth by international law. The human rights group also voiced concerns regarding the abduction of Mr. Ali's son and part of his legal defense team leading up to the review hearing.

Mir Quasem Ali, was accused [Reuters report] of murder and torture during the 1971 war of independence. More than 3 million people are believed to have died in the war and thousands of women raped, but the Jamaat-e-Islami party insists it did not commit any war crimes. Quasem Ali went into hiding when other members of the party were arrested in late 1971. He was arrested [JURIST report in 2012 and sentenced to death in 2014 by the International Crimes Tribunal. The Supreme Court of Bangladesh [official website] upheld [JURIST report] his death sentence in March.

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