War crimes trial: Yusuf to be testifed Sunday

UNB, Dhaka :
The designated Investigation Officer (IO) on Sunday will testify before the International Crimes Tribunal-2 against detained Maulana AKM Yusuf, senior nayeb-e-ameer of Jamaat-e-Islami, facing the charge of crimes against humanity during the Liberation War 43 years ago.
As the prosecution witness (PW-25) Rabiul Alam Khan, cataloguer at the library of the Press Institute of Bangladesh, concluded his testimony with the cross-examination, assigned prosecutor Syed Haider Ali on Wednesday
informed the three-member tribunal, headed by Justice Obaidul Hassan, that it decided to close the chapter of deposition with IO ASP M Helal Uddin as the last witness to prove the charges made against the Jamaat leader.
During the cross-examination by defence counsel Gazi MH Tamim, PW Rabiul told the tribunal that he had no idea about the credibility of the two reports captioned ‘Maulana Yusuf, the first initiator of Razakar force’ and ‘Maulana Yusuf was the founder of Razakar’ published in the daily Janakantha on December 20, 2000 and Samakal on May 24, 2008 respectively.
He said: “The IO had seized press clippings on both the reports in my presence on March 3 last year as documentary evidence.” The PW-35 also submitted the scanned copies of the two reports before the tribunal.
The tribunal adjourned the hearing for Sunday.
On August 1 last year, the tribunal indicted Yusuf, senior nayeb-e-ameer of Jamaat-e-Islami, for his involvement in crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War.
The tribunal considered 13 out of 15 charges of crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War as proposed by the prosecution on May 8 last year which fall under sections 3(2), 4 (1) and 4 (2) of the International Crimes (Tribunals) Act 1973.
Founder of the notorious Razakar outfit during the 1971 Liberation War, Yusuf, also the second man in the hierarchy of Jamaat leadership, faces charges, including genocide, killing, loot, arson, deportation of people and religious conversion. According to the prosecution, Jamaat leader Yusuf, a member of the infamous Malek cabinet in occupied Bangladesh, a rubberstamp government backed by the Pakistan junta, had formed for the first time in Khulna in 1971 the vigilante group Razakar with the members of Jamaat-e-Islami that acted as an auxiliary force of the Pakistan occupation army to actively thwart the Bangladesh liberation forces.
Yusuf had also acted as the chairman of the Peace Committee (Collaborator) in Bagerhat, Satkhira and Khulna districts during the Liberation War.

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