Friday, March 30, 2007

Bangladesh executes 6 Islamist militants

Bangladesh executes 6 Islamist militants

NEW DELHI: The military-backed government of Bangladesh executed six Islamist militants on Friday for the murder of two judges in a case that has come to signify unusually swift justice. The men confessed in court to the killings in November 2005 because they favor replacing secular law in the country with Islamic sharia law.

The six men were members of the banned group Jamayetul Mujahedeen Bangladesh, or J.M.B.

The group was blamed for a string of bombings and suicide attacks in 2005, raising alarm about the potential for Islamist militancy in Bangladesh, a poor and densely populated country of 140 million people.

The government at the time, headed by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, had come under sustained pressure to rein in militant activity. That government's tenure ended last October, followed by weeks of political violence.

In January, President Iajuddin Ahmed canceled elections set for that month, declared a state of emergency and an army-backed administration took over.

Go Bangladesh!