Kibria’s son demands UN investigation
Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Staff Correspondent

Reza Kibria, son of the late Awami League leader and former finance minister Shah AMS Kibria, on Sunday demanded investigation by the United Nations of his father’s murder case to ensure punishment of the real killers. Accusing the past BNP-Jamaat government and its administration of patronising the killers, Reza also vowed to continue a movement at home and abroad until fair investigation and trial of the case is ensured.

‘My father was an under-secretary of the United Nations and I think we may get its cooperation for fair investigation of the murder,’ said Reza at a reminiscence meeting held to mark the third death anniversary of Kibria, adding that a fair trial should be ensured through investigation by the United Nations.

The Dhaka city unit of the Bangladesh Awami League organised the meeting at the party’s Bangabandhu Avenue office in the morning. ‘As we have no confidence in investigation by the government agencies, we want an international investigation of the case,’ he said. He also said that Kibria’s murder was political so it should not be considered a normal killing. ‘The government should ensure trial of all the political murders including the Kibria murder to create a congenial atmosphere for the upcoming general polls,’ he said.

Reza also said that his family had been continuing a peaceful movement to underscore the demand for impartial investigation and trial of the case, but the interim government had not allowed them to continue the movement after imposing the state of emergency. AL presidium member Abdur Razzak, while addressing the meeting, also accused the past BNP-Jamaat government of not holding the trial of the case as the high-ups of the government were involved in the murder.

‘We demand trial of the case through fair investigation,’ said Razzak, adding that the existing crisis in the country would not have occurred if the country was run by people like Kibria. Tofail Ahmed, another AL presidium member, also said that the real killers and masterminds would be identified if the investigation was conducted in cooperation with the United Nations. He said that the government should hold dialogues with the political parties to discuss all the existing problems — economic and social — not only political ones. The leaders of the AL and Kibria’s family members and representatives of various socio-cultural and political organisations had offered fateha at Kibria’s grave at the Banani graveyard in the morning.

The AL also arranged a milad mahfil at the party’s Bangabandhu Avenue office in the afternoon. The Awami Juba League also held a milad at its central party office in the afternoon to mark the death anniversary of Kibria. A memorial lecture by AMA Muhith, organised by the Bangladesh Foundation for Development Research, will be delivered at the Sufia Kamal Auditorium of the National Museum at 4pm on Monday, said a press release.

Kibria, a career diplomat-turned-politician, was killed in a grenade attack on an AL meeting at Baidyer Bazar in Habiganj on January 27, 2005. Four other people were also killed in the attack. After the murder, Asma Kibria organised a series of peaceful protest programmes (including 81 weekly protests called ‘Shantir Shopokkhe Nilima’, and ‘Rokter Akkhare Shopother Shakkhor’ — a signature banner that was 3 km long) both in Bangladesh and overseas, demanding justice and an end to the culture of political violence and killing.

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