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MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the situation in Bangladesh

12.3.2013 - (2013/2561(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 122 of the Rules of Procedure

Charles Tannock, Geoffrey Van Orden on behalf of the ECR Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0133/2013

Proċedura : 2013/2561(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on the situation in Bangladesh


The European Parliament,

-    having regard to its previous resolutions on Bangladesh,

-    having regard to the joint statement of the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions and the UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers of 7 February 2013,

-    having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, signed and ratified by Bangladesh,

-    having regard to Art. 122 of its rules of procedure,



A.  Whereas the Government of Bangladesh established in 2010 the 'International Crimes Tribunal' (ICT), a specially constituted court set up to prosecute those responsible for atrocities committed during the country's 1971 war of independence;

B.  Whereas so far, the ICT has handed down three judgements, two death sentences and a life sentence;

C.  Whereas protests have been organized in the country, both by proponents and opponents of the ICT; whereas protests against the ICT have turned increasingly violent, in particular after 28 February 2013, when Delwar Hossain Sayedee, vice-president of the opposition Jamaat-e-Islaami party was sentenced to death; whereas it is reported that at least 60 people have died in recent weeks;

D.  Whereas most of the violence is instigated by the Jamaat-e-Islaami and affiliated parties; whereas some of the violence directly targets ordinary citizens and religious minorities, in particular the Hindu minority;

E.  Whereas the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions and the UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, as well as human rights organizations, have expressed concern about the tribunal's alleged shortcomings regarding fair trial and due process;



1.  Expresses its deep concern regarding the recent outbreak of violence in Bangladesh following the ICT'S verdict on 28 February 2013; expresses its condolences to relatives and acquaintances of those killed and injured as a result of the violence;

2.  Supports the Government of Bangladesh in its efforts to promote reconciliation and accountability for the crimes committed during the 1971 war of independence;

3.  Insists, however, on the application of internationally recognized minimum standards on fair trial and due process; believes that the tribunal's work will be more effective and receive more support, when these standards are applied; calls on the tribunal and the Government to allow for careful examinations of any alleged shortcomings in the trial proceedings during any appeal;

4.  Calls on the Government authorities and the opposition to refrain from acts of violence;

5.  Strongly condemns calls for violence from the Jamaat-e-Islaami and affiliated parties; furthermore strongly condemns any indiscriminate violence aimed at ordinary citizens and religious minorities, in particular the Hindu minority who suffered dozens of attacks from Islamic extremists;


6.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Government, Parliament and Home Ministry of Bangladesh, the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the EU Member States.