The execution that attracted most attention over the last few days was the killing – apparently by machine gun fire – of Jang Song Thaek, the uncle of North Korea’s young dictator, Kim Jong Un, but there was another of great significance in Bangladesh.
An Islamist leader, Abdul Kader Mullah, was hanged after being found guilty of crimes during Bangladesh’s bloody war of independence in 1971, which cost the lives of up to 3 million people. He was the first person to be executed following conviction by Bangladesh's International Crimes Tribunal.
At his trial, he was described by prosecutors as the ‘Butcher of Mirpur’, a suburb of the capital, Dhaka, where he is alleged to have been involved in the massacre of unarmed civilians and of intellectuals who supported independence from Pakistan. Mullah always denied the charges, and human rights groups have expressed concern about the court’s fairness.
Another 4 members of Mullah’s Jamaat-e-Islami party are also facing the death penalty. His execution has led to clashes in which at least 5 people have died.