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Resolution adopted unanimously by the IPU Governing Council at its 188th session
(Panama, 20 April 2011)

The Governing Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

Referring to the case of Sheikh Hasina, opposition leader of the Parliament of Bangladesh at the time the communication was submitted, as outlined in the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians (CL/188/13(b)-R.1), and to the resolution adopted at its 187th session (October 2010),

Taking into account the information provided at a hearing with the Committee by members of the Bangladeshi delegation to the 124th IPU Assembly on progress in and challenges to the investigation into the grenade attack of August 2004 against the then opposition leader Sheikh Hasina and other Awami League members which left scores of people dead and wounded,

Recalling that, according to the Home Ministry’s report of March 2010, the investigation into the grenade attack revealed the following: the grenade attack was decided on at a meeting in the government quarters of then Deputy Minister Abdus Salam Pinto; his brother, Mr. Moulana Mohammad Tajuddin, supplied the grenades for the attack; former State Minister for Home Affairs Lutfozzaman Babar and Mr. Salam Pinto provided administrative and financial support; the government of the time arranged for Mr. Tajuddin to leave Bangladesh; according to newspaper reports forwarded by the source, in August 2010 the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) arrested Saiful Islam Duke, the nephew of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Chairperson Khaleda Zia, who was the Prime Minister at the time of the grenade attack; Duke is accused of having helped Moulana Mohammad Tajuddin flee the country on the instructions of the then Prime Minister’s Office,

Considering that media reports have also made reference to the possible implication of the former Prime Minister's Political Secretary, Mr. Harris Chowdhury, convicted in Bangladesh on several corruption cases, and her son, Mr. Tarique Rahman, charged in Bangladesh with corruption in several cases and released on bail, both of whom are said to be in the United Kingdom,

Considering that the Criminal Investigation Department has repeatedly requested additional time to submit its report on the investigation into the attack and that the Court has granted such requests, albeit most recently with a warning not to cause any further delays; that, according to the Bangladeshi delegation, the CID has been given a further 60 days to submit its final report; noting also that the delegation insisted that it was essential for the investigation to take all the time needed so as to prevent any questions from being raised later regarding how the investigation was handled,

Considering that, according to the Bangladeshi delegation, the Standing Committee on the Ministry of Home Affairs, which meets at least once a month, continues to monitor the case, and that the Ministry has been directed to report regularly on progress to the Standing Committee's meetings, which it is doing,

  1. Thanks the members of the Bangladeshi delegation for their cooperation and for the information provided;

  2. Acknowledges that an investigation into a crime of this magnitude and its ramifications requires both time and thoroughness; trusts that the investigatory authorities, besides applying the necessary diligence, are acting as swiftly as possible to complete their report and hence allow justice to be dispensed without undue delay; 

  3. Wishes in this respect to ascertain whether the Criminal Investigation Department has indeed been able to meet the latest deadline set by the Court for the submission of its report and, if so, to learn of its contents inasmuch as it concerns public information;

  4. Would be grateful to Parliament's Standing Committee on the Ministry of Home Affairs if it could, to the extent possible, share with the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians any official public information submitted to it;

  5. Reiterates its wishto ascertain from the authorities whether or not Mr. Chowdhury and Mr. Rahman have been officially linked to the investigation and, if so, whether the Bangladeshi authorities have issued international warrants for their arrest in this case;

  6. Requests the Secretary General to convey this resolution to the competent authorities and to the source;

  7. Requests the Committee to continue examining this case and report to it at its next session, to be held on the occasion of the 125th IPU Assembly (October 2011).
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