Hundreds of Bangladesh opposition supporters jailed, BNP calls new protests
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Opposition parties in Bangladesh have called two more days of anti-government agitation, after special courts jailed hundreds of their supporters during a 36-hour general strike.
The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) claimed that as many as 700 of its supporters have been imprisoned by so-called “mobile courts” – teams of magistrates and police who hand down on-the-spot convictions.
Police on Monday confirmed 127 sentences of up to one year in the capital, Dhaka, and the port city of Chittagong.
Among those detained were former home minister Altaf Hossain Chowdhury and former water resources minister Hafiz Uddin Ahmed, as well as a former air force chief.
The hartal – a workers’ strike and business closure - was backed by the Islamist Jamaat-e-Islami and ended Monday evening.
Vehicles were set on fire in Dhaka and Chittagong and police fired rubber bullets and tear gas at a protest in the northern town of Sirajganj, wounding about a dozen people.