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Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin

Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin
Native name চৌধুরী মঈনুদ্দীন
Born (1948-11-27) 27 November 1948
East Bengal (now Bangladesh)
Ethnicity Bengali
Known for
Criminal charge
16 count of charges including 1971 killing of Bengali intellectuals[5][6][7]
Criminal penalty
Death Sentence given in absentia by ICT

Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin (Bengali: চৌধুরী মঈনুদ্দীন; born 27 November 1948), is one of the convicted war criminal for killing Bengali intellectuals in collaboration with Pakistan army at the time of Bangladesh liberation war.[1][8][9][10] After the liberation of Bangladesh, Chowdhury escape from Bangladesh and took British citizenship.[11][12]

Chowdhury is a trustee (former chairman) of Muslim Aid,[3][13][14] and a director of Muslim spiritual care provision in the United Kingdom's National Health Service (NHS).[4]

On 3 November 2013, the International Crimes Tribunal which is set up by the government of Bangladesh to judge international crimes committed during 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War, sentenced Mueen-Uddin, in absentia, to death for killing 9 teachers of Dhaka University, 6 journalists and 3 doctors in 1971.[5][9][10][15] Mueen has remained in the United Kingdom since leaving Bangladesh shortly after its independence in 1971.[16] Mueen-Uddin denies the charges.[17]

He was alleged war criminal long before creation of International Crimes Tribunal (Bangladesh). In 1972, [8] In In 1995, a documentary film made by David Bergman, named War Crimes File was aired on British television channel Channel 4 showing his involvement in 1971 Bangladesh genocide.[18][19]


  • Career 1
  • War crimes trial 2
    • Arrest warrant and extradition conditions 2.1
    • Allegations from the relatives of the victims 2.2
    • Verdict 2.3
    • Reaction of trial from defence 2.4
    • Reaction from victims' relatives about verdict 2.5
    • Europe's reaction to the trial 2.6
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


In 1971, Mueen-Uddin was a journalist at the Daily Purbodesh. In 1972,

External links

  1. ^ a b c Gilligan, Andrew (16 April 2012). "Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin to be charged with war crimes".  
  2. ^ "UK Muslim leader Chowdhury Mueen Uddin sentenced to death in Bangladesh". The Independent. 3 November 2013. Retrieved 5 November 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Governance".  
  4. ^ a b c d Gallows for Mueen, Ashraf, The Daily Star (3 November 2013).
  5. ^ a b "HANG Mueen, Ashraf".  
  6. ^ "Arrest warrant against 2 al-Badr operatives issued". 2 May 2013. Retrieved 15 November 2013. 
  7. ^ "ICT issues arrest order against Mueen, Ashrafuzzaman".  
  8. ^ a b c "NY Times finds journalist link to intellectuals’ massacre", The Daily Ittefaq (13 December 2012).
  9. ^ a b c d "ICT-2 to pass order on Chy Mueen, Ashraf on May 2".  
  10. ^ a b c d "Charges against Mueen, Ashraf accepted".  
  11. ^ a b c Mueen-Uddin's extradition unlikely, (4 November 2013).
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h Gilligan, Andrew (15 April 2012). "Leading British Muslim leader faces war crimes charges in Bangladesh".  
  13. ^ Scott-Joynt, Jeremy (15 October 2003). "Charities in terror fund spotlight".  
  14. ^ The Islamist: Why I Became an ... – Google Books. Retrieved 13 August 2010. 
  15. ^ a b c "Ashraf, Mueen to hang for mass murder".  
  16. ^ "Killers at home turn leaders abroad".  
  17. ^ "Bangladesh convicts UK-based Muslim leader for war crimes".  
  18. ^ Sathi, Muktasree Chakma (4 November 2013). "UK documentary narrated Chowdhury Mueen's involvement".  
  19. ^ "Defender of Justice".  
  20. ^ "Fox Butterfield's report".  
  21. ^ a b Nelson, Dean (3 November 2013). "British Muslim leader sentenced to death in Bangladesh". The Telegraph. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  22. ^ Taher, Abul (14 April 2013). "NHS boss faces death penalty over charges of torture and 18 murders in Bangladesh".  
  23. ^ Taher, Abul (13 October 2013). "NHS boss faces death penalty charges torture 18 murders".  
  24. ^ Genocide 1971, An Account of the Killers And Collaborators Genocide '71 (5 ed.). Muktijuddha Chetana Bikash Kendra. pp. 185, 248. 
  25. ^ Gilliat-Ray, Sophie (2010). Muslims in Britain: An Introduction.  
  26. ^ Barker, Eileen (2005). The Centrality of Religion in Social Life: Essays in Honour of James A. Beckford.  
  27. ^ "UK Muslim leader faces war crime charges in B'desh".  
  28. ^ Adhikary, Tuhin Shubhra (19 March 2013). "Prosecution moves at snail's pace".  
  29. ^ "British Muslim leader Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin indicted for genocide and crimes against humanity".  
  30. ^ Hussain, Delwar (7 October 2009). "Prosecute Bangladesh's war criminals".  
  31. ^ Bergman, David. "Bangladesh: Tracking down the killers", New Age, via South Asia Citizens Web (8 November 2013).
  32. ^ Bright, Martin. "Convicted in Bangladesh – what it means in the UK", The Jewish Chronicle (7 November 2013).
  33. ^ "ICT issues arrest order against Mueen, Ashrafuzzaman".  
  34. ^ Khan, Tamanna (4 November 2013). "It was matricide". The Daily Star. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  35. ^ "Ashraf-Mueen face arrest warrant". Bangla News 24. 2 May 2013. Retrieved 2 May 2013. 
  36. ^ DE GRAAF, MIA (3 November 2013). "Muslim leader living in Britain sentenced to death by hanging for war crimes in Bangladesh". Daily Mail. Retrieved 6 November 2013. 
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^ a b c "Bangladesh Death Sentence For UK Muslim Leader". Sky News. Retrieved 6 November 2013. 
  40. ^ Hull, Jonah (3 November 2013). "'"Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin: 'Not a war criminal. Al Jazeera. Retrieved 9 November 2013. 
  41. ^ Rubin, Barry A. (2010). Guide to Islamist Movements. M.E. Sharpe. p. 59.  
  42. ^ "ভারতীয় চক্রান্ত বরদাস্ত করব না (We will never tolerate Indian conspiracy)".  
  43. ^ Fair, C. Christine (16 June 2010). Pakistan: Can the United States Secure an Insecure State?. Rand Corporation. pp. 21–22.  
  44. ^
  45. ^ Cammegh, John (17 November 2011). "In Bangladesh: Reconciliation or Revenge?". New York Times. Retrieved 6 November 2013. 
  46. ^
  47. ^ "US, UK unlikely to return Mueen, Ashraf". The Daily Star. 3 November 2013. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 


  • Al-Badr, paramilitary wing of the West Pakistan Army during the Bangladesh Liberation War
  • Razakars, paramilitary force in East Pakistan during the Bangladesh Liberation War

See also

Warren Daley, spokesperson of the British high commission in Dhaka, said: “The UK has made clear its support for Bangladesh’s efforts to bring to justice those accused of atrocities committed in 1971. Along with our EU partners, we are however opposed to the application of the death penalty in all circumstances."[47]

The UK said on 22 January 2013 that it supported the war crimes trial in Bangladesh but always opposed capital punishment while Germany and France termed the trial an internal affair of the country. They gave their reactions a day after the International Crimes Tribunal-2 awarded death sentence to Abul Kalam Azad for genocide and crimes against humanity during the Liberation War.[46]

Europe's reaction to the trial

Relatives of the victims voiced their satisfaction at the verdicts. Professor Rashiddudin Ahmad, whose brother Giasuddin Ahmed, a university teacher at the time was amongst those killed, said: “We have waited 40 years for this. It is some sort of justice, even though the sentence may never be carried out.”[21]

Reaction from victims' relatives about verdict

John Cammegh, a barrister in chambers at 9 Bedford Row, London, which represents Mueen-Uddin,[44] in an op-ed piece, stated that the trial "made mockery of that principle [of international law], and that it served as "a terrible warning of the way in which the ideals of universal justice and accountability can be abused".[45]

However, the trial was criticised by Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami, the party he was served and which opposed the creation of Bangladesh and took part in committing war crime in 1971, stated that the trials were politically motivated. They also accused the current government of trying to destroy the opposition party by sentencing its leadership to death.[39][41][42][43] However, the political motivation against Mueen-Uddin is unclear as he is living in the UK for more than 40 years. Mueen-Uddin's Legal Counsel described the verdict as "farcical". He further alleged "serious judicial and prosecutorial misconduct and the collusion of the Government with members of the judiciary and prosecution", and condemned the entire trial as a "show trial".[39]

Reaction of trial from defence

The tribunal also said that Mueen-Uddin sometimes carried out the murders, and sometimes instigated and encouraged them. They ruled that he and his allies had complete control over the Al Badr during the 1971 War.[15]

On 3 November 2013, the International Crimes Tribunal – a special Bangladeshi court set up by the government – sentenced Mueen-uddin to death after the tribunal found him guilty in absentia of torture and murder of 18 intellectuals during 1971 Liberation war of Bangladesh. According to The Daily Star, lawyers called no defence witnesses, whereas the prosecution brought in 25 witnesses, due to non-co-operation from Mueen-Uddin's family.[4][39] Those sentenced in absentia are not eligible to challenge the court's verdict.[15] Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin denied the charges in an interview aired by Al Jazeera in August 2013.[40]


This brought forward two further witnesses, Mushtaqur and Mahmudur Rahman, who claim they recognised the picture as somebody who had been part of an armed group looking for the BBC correspondent in Dhaka during the abductions. The group was unsuccessful because the BBC man had gone into hiding.[12]

Mueen-Uddin's then editor at the paper, Atiqur Rahman, said that Mr Mueen-Uddin had been the first journalist in the country to reveal the existence of the Al-Badr Brigade and had demonstrated intimate knowledge of its activities. After his colleagues disappeared, he said, Mueen-Uddin had asked for his home address. Fearing that he too would be abducted, the editor gave a fake address. Rahman's name, complete with the fake address, appeared on an Al-Badr death list found just after the end of the war. "I gave that address only to Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin, and when that list appeared it was obvious that he had given that address to Al Badr," Rahman said in statements given to the investigators. "I'm sure I gave the address to no-one else." Rahman then published a front-page story and picture about Mueen-Uddin, who had by that stage left the city, naming him as involved in "disappearances."[12][38]

Another reporter on Purbodesh, Ghulam Mostafa, also disappeared. The vanished journalist's brother, Dulu, said he appealed to Mr Mueen-Uddin for help and was taken around the main Pakistani Army detention and torture centres by Mr Mueen-Uddin. Dulu Mostafa said that Mr Mueen-Uddin appeared to be well known at the detention centres, gained easy admission to the premises and was saluted by the Pakistani guards as he entered. Ghulam was never found.[12]

One of the other members of the group, who was caught soon afterwards, allegedly gave Mr Mueen-Uddin's name in his confession.[12]

The widow of another victim, claims that Mr Mueen-Uddin was in the group that abducted her husband, Sirajuddin Hussain, another journalist, from their home on the night of 10 December 1971.[37] "There was no doubt that he was the person involved in my husband's abduction and killing," said Noorjahan Seraji. "I have waited 40 years to see the trial of the war criminals," said the widow, Noorjahan Seraji. "I have not spent a single night without suffering and I want justice."[12]

The widow of one victim, Dolly Chaudhury, claims to have identified Mr Mueen-Uddin as one of three men who abducted her husband, Mufazzal Haider Chaudhury, a prominent scholar of Bengali literature, on the night of 14 December 1971.[36] "I was able to identify one [of the abductors], Mueen-Uddin," she said in video testimony, seen by The Sunday Telegraph. "He was wearing a scarf but my husband pulled it down as he was taken away. When he was a student, he often used to go to my brother in law's house. My husband, my sister-in-law, my brother-in-law, we all recognised that man." Professor Chaudhury was never seen again.[12]

Allegations from the relatives of the victims

Both Mueen and Khan were charged with committing a war crime by killing 18 intellectuals who were Dhaka University Professors Ghyasuddin Ahmed, Rashidul Hasan, Anwar Pasha, Faizul Mahi, famous playwright and Professor Munier Chowdhury, Mufazzal Haider Chaudhury, Dr Abul Khair, Dr Santosh Chandra Bhattacharyya and Dr Sirajul Haque Khan, Professor of Cardiology Mohammed Fazle Rabbee, eminent eye specialist AFM Alim Chowdhury, Physician Mohammad Martuza, Novelist and Journalist Shahidullah Kaiser, Journalist and Poet Selina Parvin, Journalists Serajuddin Hossain, Syed Nazmul Haque, ANM Golam Mostafa, and Nizamuddin Ahmed, in between 10 to 15 December 1971.[4][33][34] An arrest warrant also issued for them. Both of them was most wanted after Bangladesh liberation war. According to prob report Chowdhury Mueen-Uddin was "operation-in-charge of Al-Badr".[9][10][35]

On 2 May 2013, Bangladesh's International Crimes Tribunal brought war criminal charges against Mueen-Uddin and Ashrafuz Zaman Khan. The United Kingdom does not have an extradition agreement with Bangladesh, and the UK was reluctant to extradite Mueen-Uddin without assurances of a fair trail, plus assurances that there would be no death penalty in the event of a guilty verdict.[11] Although Scotland Yard said in the 1990s that Bangladesh had primary jurisdiction for prosecuting Mueen for the 1971 killings,[31] Britain could reconsider its decision to not prosecute.[32]

Arrest warrant and extradition conditions

In 2012, Bangladesh law minister Shafique Ahmed stated that Mueen-Uddin would be charged for war crimes.[27] However, the prosecution has delayed submitting charges.[28] He is accused of being a top member of the notorious paramilitary force Al-Badr and of the fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami political party, which fought for the country to remain part of Pakistan.[29] Mueen-Uddin has denied all allegations.[30]

In 1995, a documentary film War Crimes File by David Bergman was aired on British television channel Channel 4 about the 1971 Bangladesh genocide. In the film, Mueen-Uddin was accused of being a member of the pro-Pakistan paramilitary force Al-Badr during the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War, and of being involved in war crimes.

War crimes trial

Since moving to the UK in the early 1970s, Mueen-Uddin has taken British citizenship and built a career as a community activist and Muslim leader. In 1989 he was a key leader of protests against the Salman Rushdie book, The Satanic Verses. Around the same time he helped to found the extremist Islamic Forum of Europe, Jamaat-e-Islami's European wing, which believes in creating a sharia state in Europe and in 2010 was accused by a Labour minister, Jim Fitzpatrick, of infiltrating the Labour Party. Tower Hamlets' directly-elected mayor, Lutfur Rahman, was expelled from Labour for his close links with the IFE. Until 2010 Mr Mueen-Uddin was vice-chairman of the controversial East London Mosque, controlled by the IFE, in which capacity he greeted Prince Charles when the heir to the throne opened an extension to the mosque. He was also closely involved with the Muslim Council of Britain, which has been dominated by the IFE. He was chairman and remains a trustee of the IFE-linked charity, Muslim Aid, which has a budget of £20 million. He has also been closely involved in the Markfield Institute, the key institution of Islamist higher education in the UK.[12]

Mueen-Uddin is a director of Muslim Spiritual Care Provision in the United Kingdom's National Health Service (NHS), a member of Multi Faith Group for Healthcare Chaplaincy (MFGHC), and a trustee of Muslim Aid.[25][26] He is currently a citizen of the UK.[11]


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