A Bangladeshi boy shouts slogans as he joins a rally with activists demanding maximum penalty for war criminals in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013. A special war crimes tribunal in Bangladesh on Sunday sentenced to death two Bangladeshis now living in the U.S. and Britain for crimes against humanity during the country's independence war against Pakistan in 1971. (AP Photo/Suvra Kanti Das)
Bangladeshis at a rally demanded the maximum penalty for two war criminals. And they got their wish. A war-crimes tribunal in Bangladesh on Sunday sentenced two expatriates to death by hanging for the murder of 18 people, including prominent intellectuals, during the country’s 1971 war of independence from Pakistan. A judge in the capital, Dhaka, said the two men, who were tried in absentia, “encouraged, gave moral support to and participated in the killing” of 18 people, described as university professors, journalists and physicians who supported the independence movement. Both defendants fled Bangladesh shortly after it gained independence. One of the men, Chowdhury Mueen Uddin, made his home in London, where he became a prominent Muslim leader. The second man, Ashrafuzzaman Khan, moved to New York, where he was active in the Islamic Circle of North America.