Court rejects Hasina immunity plea

Judges throw out petition seeking protection from arrest for Awami League leader.

    Hasina was prevented from boarding a Dhaka-bound flight at London's Heathrow airport [Reuters]

    Bangladesh's army-backed interim government last week withdrew a ban on Hasina returning to the country from abroad.

     

    Grave charges

       

    A court also suspended an arrest warrant last week issued for her alleged involvement in deaths related to street violence between rival political parties in October.

       

    Hasina also faces a charge of extorting about $430,000 from a businessman in 1998.

     

    She has denied both the charges and vowed to fight them in court.

     

    Hasina, daughter of Bangladesh's indepedence leader, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, is the leader of the Awami League. She is a political opponent of Begum Khaleda Zia, leader of the rival Bangladesh National Party.

     

    Zia is the widow of Zia-ur-Rahman, a former military ruler.

     

    Hasina and Zia have alternated as prime ministers since 1990 and are blamed by many for the country's poverty and endemic corruption.

     

    The military-backed interim government, which assumed power early this year after general elections were postponed, initially tried to exile the two women, but then backed down after widespread criticism.

     

    While Bangladeshis have generally applauded the interim government's crackdown on corruption, many felt that the attempt to exile the two leaders went too far.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Take a tour through divided Jerusalem

    Interactive: Take a tour through divided Jerusalem

    Take a tour through East and West Jerusalem to see the difference in quality of life for Israelis and Palestinians.

    Stories from the sex trade

    Stories from the sex trade

    Dutch sex workers, pimps and johns share their stories.

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    As the stigma associated with being childless persists, some elderly women in India risk it all to become mothers.