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  #1  
Old January 29, 2005, 04:25 PM
Drishtipat Drishtipat is offline
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Default ACTION ALERT: Protest the assassination of Shah AMS Kibria to your local Embassy

**** Do not circulate this alert after Sunday, February 20, 2005 ****

1. The situation
2. Take action
3. Sample email/letter/fax
4. About Drishtipat


1. The situation:

Awami League (AL) leader and former finance minister Shah AMS Kibria was assassinated in a grenade attack in Habiganj on Thursday, January 27, 2005.
The attack also left four other AL activists dead and over 70 injured.

This is the latest in a string of deadly attacks on cultural organizations and political parties over the last few years, all of which remain unsolved mysteries. It also comes a little less than five months after a similar grenade attack on Leader of the Opposition, Sheikh Hasina, that left 22 people dead and hundreds injured.

As Bangladeshis, it is our duty to express concern and outrage at the government's inability to identify the perpetrators, let alone capture the terrorists and ensure justice for the victims. Failure to hold the government accountable at this crucial juncture will only lead to further deterioration of the law and order situation in Bangladesh.


2. Take action:

Contact the Bangladeshi Mission in your country to express your concerns and demand that the government aggressively confront these enemies of the state, whoever they may be. Forward this message to your friends and acquaintances who have email. Print copies and distribute them to those who don't.

Contact information for the Missions in Australia, Canada, the UK and USA are given below. Information for other missions can be found from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website at: http://www.mofabd.org/.

Please send a copy of your email to info@drishtipat.org, and drop us a line if you've sent a letter or fax.


High Commission for the People's Republic of Bangladesh , Australia:

Representative: High Commissioner Mr. Ashraf-ud-Doula
Address: 21 Culgoa Circuit, O'Malley,
ACT-2606,Canberra, Australia
Phone: +(61)2 6290-0511, +(61)2 6290-0522, +(61)2 6290-0533
Fax: +(61)2 6290-0544, +(61)2 6290-0566
E-mail: bdoot.canberra@cyberone.com.au


High Commission for the People's Republic of Bangladesh, Canada:

Representative: High Commissioner Mr. Rafiq Ahmed Khan
Address: 275 Bank Street, Suite-302
Ottawa, Ont. K2P 2L6, Canada
Phone: + (613) 236-0138, + (613) 236-0139
Fax: + (613) 567-3213
E-mail: bang@bellnet.ca



High Commission for the Republic of Bangladesh , UK:

Representative: High Commissioner Mr. A.H. Mofazzal Karim
Address: 28 Queen's Gate,
London SW7 5JA, UK
Phone: 020 7584 0081
Fax: 020 7581 7477
E-mail: bdesh.lon@dial.pipex.com


Embassy of the People's Republic of Bangladesh , USA:

Representative: Ambassador Syed Hasan Ahmad
Address: 3510 International Drive,
Washington DC 20008, USA
Phone: + (1) 202 244 0183
Fax: + (1) 202 244 5366, + (1) 202 244 7830
E-mail: banglaemb@aol.com





3. Sample email/letter/fax:

A sample is provided for your convenience, but you are highly encouraged to write a personal account to best convey your thoughts and concerns.

Your Excellency _______,

As a concerned citizen, I am writing to express my outrage and shock at the assassination of senior Awami League leader Shah AMS Kibria and demand that the perpetrators be brought to justice.

I, along with many members of the Bangladeshi expatriate community, have been dismayed at the impunity at which these attacks have been carried out over the last few years, and alarmed at their increasingly brutal and brazen nature. After the assassination attempt on Opposition Leader Sheikh Hasina on August 21, 2004, I had hoped that the government would take appropriate measures to aggressively pursue these terrorists and dismantle their infrastructure to deter further attacks of this kind.

Yet, in the five months leading to the assassination of Mr. Kibria, the government hadn't even been able to identify these terrorists, let alone bring them to justice. It is with great disappointment that I must ask why it is failing us on this crucial issue of national security. When assurances of utmost effort are followed by stalled investigations, and over a course of a few years at that, one wonders if the government is simply unable or unwilling to carry out its responsibilities. Needless to say, its failure to deliver will only lead to further deterioration of the law and order situation in Bangladesh.

We cannot afford to sacrifice the democratic values we have come to live by on the altar of terrorism. As a citizen of Bangladesh, I demand to know who these terrorists are, and what concrete steps our government is taking to protect Bangladesh from these enemies of the state, whether they are foreign or domestic.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

______________




4. About Drishtipat

Drishtipat is a non-profit, non-political expatriate Bangladeshi organization committed to safeguarding every individual's basic democratic rights, including freedom of expression, and is opposed to any and all kinds of human rights abuses in Bangladesh. We are based in the United States, and have members in every part of the globe.


Contact information:

Address: Drishtipat,
P O box 1581,
NY NY 10156, USA
Email: info@drishtipat.org
Web: www.drishtipat.org
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  #2  
Old January 29, 2005, 05:21 PM
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Navarene Navarene is offline
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I welcome this protest action initiated by Drishtipat by heart. Just one question: why does Drishtipat advocate to protest only for AMS Kibria assassination? Why dont they suggest to protest the killing of 4 other grenade victims?

Quote:
As a concerned citizen, I am writing to express my outrage and shock at the assassination of senior Awami League leader Shah AMS Kibria
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  #3  
Old January 29, 2005, 07:08 PM
Special 1 Special 1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Navarene
I welcome this protest action initiated by Drishtipat by heart. Just one question: why does Drishtipat advocate to protest only for AMS Kibria assassination? Why dont they suggest to protest the killing of 4 other grenade victims?

Quote:
As a concerned citizen, I am writing to express my outrage and shock at the assassination of senior Awami League leader Shah AMS Kibria
This is because Kibria is an MP, and a vip in Bangladesh. If his life has no security, no1 elses is. So, by bringing that up, it automatically brings in the death of the other 4 people. And seriously the question you are posing is absolutely stupid. I mean ofcourse there is difference between the killing of an average joe and a VIP.(atleast in today's world) I am not saying that it is right, but it is the case. When RAb kills shontrasi, most people do not even care, actually they are happier.
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  #4  
Old January 29, 2005, 09:05 PM
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al Furqaan al Furqaan is offline
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yeah, like our inept gov. will do anything about it...too much wishful thiking.
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  #5  
Old January 29, 2005, 09:11 PM
mahmoodh mahmoodh is offline
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SAMS Kibria as an expertriate organized pople to work for the liberation of Bangladesh.
So it is our turn to do what our country demands- we can not stay silent any more.
Express your anger strong.
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  #6  
Old January 30, 2005, 06:54 AM
chinaman chinaman is offline
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I took away two posts from here and don't wanna see any repeats. Thank you very much for your understanding and co-operation.
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  #7  
Old January 30, 2005, 06:57 AM
Sham Sham is offline
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Default Its not a question of whether they will do something about it

You don't only protest something or take a principled stand when you are sure that something will be done as a result. As citizens, it is more than our right, it is our duty to protest when we feel that our country is going down a dangerous path.

I have never been much an of AL supporter, as I have already said in the past on this message board, and I wasn't a fan of SAMS Kibria either, atleast not of his tenure as Foreign Minister. But this is becoming ridiculous! You can't allow a group, whoever they may be, to kill off the opposition! Government's indifference in this matter is unacceptable, and I don't care whether they will do something about it or not, I am going to, and I hope a lot of you will join me, in protesting! One bomb blast after another, targetting opposition leaders, foreign diplomats, cultural events, cinemas, jatras, minorities, we can't allow this to go on in Bangladesh! When some of us are better placed to do something more concrete about it, I'm sure we will, but for the time being, we must atleast register a protest of some sort. Drishtipath is just providing one way of doing that.

Anyway, whoever has put this up on behalf of Drishtipath, and I have a pretty good idea who it was, well done. People are usually too lazy to write something up, so it was clever of you guys to draft a letter that they might use.
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  #8  
Old January 30, 2005, 09:32 AM
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Zobair Zobair is offline
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well said sham! we need to show that there are people who care...and that we are watching.
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  #9  
Old January 30, 2005, 09:55 AM
rafiq rafiq is offline
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The one thing that could and probably will get appended to the appeal: a call to the oppostion parties (as well as to the GOB). They have to be responsible, mature and effective in their reponse. There isn't a parliamentary process where one can have any meaningful debate. All they seem to have available to them as a tool is the hartal. The hartal does nothing to get at the perpretrators and ultimately only allows for venting frustration and in the process damages more public and private assets.

It takes 5 minutes to cut and paste this into an email or fax. No more than 5% of those who AGREE with a protest will actually do it. Among the reasons: 1) the protest will not yield results and 2) is it a personal security risk to me?

The second is a valid question in the day and age of RAB, but they can't come after everyone, can they? As for the first, it is in and of itself a necessary first step - the result is not so much a sudden about turn in GOB actions regarding the investigations (although one can always hope), but adding to a culture of public awareness, concern and action which is sorely lacking in our more educated society don't you think?

Sham, I like your sig! So true!
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  #10  
Old January 31, 2005, 02:01 AM
rafiq rafiq is offline
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This was forwarded from Dr. Reza Kibria, son of the deceased. The opinions expressed are his.
__________________________________________________ ____

Message from Dr. Reza Kibria
January 31, 2005

Dear Friends,
The time for grief is short. Our family and those in Bangladesh and around the world who cared for him must now turn to the task of ensuring that my father's killers are brought to justice.The failure of the Government to arrange for his treatment after the attack or arrange helicopter transportation to Dhaka suggests that writing to the GOB is not particulalry useful. The initial campaign should focus on national parliaments.



We are are in the process of setting up a website. There are a lot of other intiatives being taken. The key thing should be that the campaign must be sustained and effective. There is no assurance of safety for any of us under this regime - the campaign must continue at all costs even if something happens to us or other members of my family.

We attach a statement given to the press yesterday. I would be grateful if it could be circulated as widely as possible.

Dr. Reza Kibria Dr. Nazli Kibria
January 30, 2005



We are saddened and distressed that the tragedy of my father’s assassination is being used by the BNP-Jamaat Government to spread more lies. It is therefore important to set the record straight on a few key issues.

1. The Prime Minister has apparently made a statement that she requested permission to visit us but did not receive any response. No permission is required to visit a bereaved family, but in any case we did not know of any such request. Much more important than any such gesture and a few meaningless phrases would be real action on her part to bring my father’s killers to justice. If she did this there would be no need to come to us – we would ourselves go to her office to thank her.

2. My father might have lived if he had been transported to Dhaka by helicopter or if he had been given treatment at the Government medical facilities or even if he had been sent a properly-equipped ambulance. He was denied these facilities. The reasons for these failures should be within the purview of any serious investigation.

3. The Speaker Mr. Sircar has failed to accurately report to the press what my mother said to him on the telephone. He seemed preoccupied with the convention of holding a Janaaza on the South Plaza of the Sangsad Bhavan. My mother asked him why he failed in his much more significant duties of ensuring the security of Members of Parliament such as my father, arranging medical treatment or helicopter transportation to Dhaka. He made no attempt to visit BIRDEM hospital, where my father was taken, or attend his Janaaza. It is very sad Mr. Sircar appears to regard his position as that of the Speaker of the BNP.

4. The past record of the BNP and the BNP-Jamaat regimes with regard to investigations of past attacks on the Awami League do not give us any confidence in their capability or interest in finding my father’s killers. It has not escaped anyone’s attention that the target of the bomb attacks is the Awami League. Each investigation appears to fizzle out – the killing of my father’s colleagues Ahsanullah Master and Ivy Rahman and many others have gone unpunished. The Government’s inadequate response to the carefully orchestrated attack of August 21 on Sheikh Hasina is another sign of its ill-intent or at the very least, gross incompetence.

5. The Government has reportedly agreed to an international investigation of my father’s assassination. Any such investigation should be genuinely independent with no participation by any Government agency in its management or supervision. The Government should cooperate when requested, and any report should be made available in its entirety to the public. We have no confidence in a government-supervised “joint” investigation.

6. My father wrote the original position paper that led to SAARC. We feel that at this time it is inappropriate to hold such a summit meeting, hosted by a “failed government” led by a group of people who have lost the moral authority to govern this country.

7. There have been street protests all over the country, some of them violent. I would urge restraint to all those who respected my father and knew his commitment to peaceful democratic processes. Of course the Government has left the people of this country no other forum to express their opposition to its policies. It is shameful that MPs of the opposition are not even allowed to speak freely in Parliament.

8. There are good and patriotic people in every public institution and agency of the State, as well as every area of private endeavor. We would like to say to them, “The time has come to take a stand”. They know that their ultimate loyalties lie with this great country of ours, and not any group of unprincipled individuals who have captured power.

9. This latest attack on my father goes beyond the world of politics. No one is safe under this Government – and there is real fear in every house. Public interest in such incidents tends to wane after a few months, but the people of this country must now realize the terrible price of inaction.

Dr. Reza Kibria

Edited on, January 31, 2005, 7:01 AM GMT, by rafiq.
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  #11  
Old February 1, 2005, 02:28 PM
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Canada_R Canada_R is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sham
You don't only protest something or take a principled stand when you are sure that something will be done as a result. As citizens, it is more than our right, it is our duty to protest when we feel that our country is going down a dangerous path.

I have never been much an of AL supporter, as I have already said in the past on this message board, and I wasn't a fan of SAMS Kibria either, atleast not of his tenure as Foreign Minister. But this is becoming ridiculous! You can't allow a group, whoever they may be, to kill off the opposition! Government's indifference in this matter is unacceptable, and I don't care whether they will do something about it or not, I am going to, and I hope a lot of you will join me, in protesting! One bomb blast after another, targetting opposition leaders, foreign diplomats, cultural events, cinemas, jatras, minorities, we can't allow this to go on in Bangladesh! When some of us are better placed to do something more concrete about it, I'm sure we will, but for the time being, we must atleast register a protest of some sort. Drishtipath is just providing one way of doing that.

Anyway, whoever has put this up on behalf of Drishtipath, and I have a pretty good idea who it was, well done. People are usually too lazy to write something up, so it was clever of you guys to draft a letter that they might use.


Wow, Well done! I could not have said any better! Excellent Post.
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  #12  
Old February 1, 2005, 02:54 PM
Shubho Shubho is offline
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Spot on, Sham. Well written piece. I hope a lot of us will heed the message.
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  #13  
Old February 2, 2005, 01:17 AM
rafiq rafiq is offline
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Default Coalition of Outraged Women

Thanks to Dr. Hameeda Hossain for sending the text.
___________________________________________
We, the Citizens of Bangladesh, Demand Security...


A statement issued by 74 women in Dhaka, on 30 January, 2005 following the assassination of Shah A M S Kibria and five members of his audience (Abul Hossain, Farid, Manjurul Huda Manju, Siddiq Ali, Abdur Rahim) in a grenade attack on a public meeting in Habiganj, Sylhet. The names of the signatories are given below the statement.



We, the Citizens of Bangladesh Demand Security...


The latest in a series of bomb attacks occurred on 27 January 2005 at an Awami League public meeting in Habiganj, Sylhet. In this attack Shah A M S Kibria, member of Parliament, internationally renowned economist, freedom-fighter, language movement activist, member of Awami League's Presidium, the former Finance Minister and 5 others ( Abul Hossain, Farid, Manjurul Huda Manju, Siddiq Ali, Abdur Rahim) were killed. According to newspaper reports, nearly a hundred persons were injured. The targeted killing of a high-ranking leader of a large political party has shocked people at large. Citizens are now fearful that bomb attacks may occur in the most unsuspecting of public places.
They are also distrustful because of the administration's failure to take action against the perpetrators of previous bomb attacks, or to take adequate security measures. The situation is leading to increasing desperation, and encourages criminality and violence. We think the present situation is highly dangerous for the nation as it signals an absolute breakdown of political and social morals.

In the last 5 years, from March 1999 to January 2005, over 140 persons have been killed in 21 bomb and grenade attacks. These attacks have targeted political public meetings, cultural activities, including theatre performances (Jatra and Baul singing), and even homes of political or cultural activists. We do not think that these incidents are unconnected; on the contrary, they appear to be systematic and well planned. This is why these incidents of bomb and grenade attacks are very alarming. We are concerned with the administration's failure to prevent these attacks, to carry out proper investigations, to make public investigation reports or to bring the perpetrators to justice.
What is most alarming is the inefficiency, incapability and lack of a clear political will on the part of the government to stem the tide of political violence.

Information available from different news sources - government and private - reveals that after these bomb or grenade attacks, investigations have remained inconclusive, evidence has been destroyed, enquiry commission reports have not been made public and perpetrators have not been caught. Instead a few arrests made on grounds of suspicion have been a source of harassment, and only once has the accused been charge-sheeted. So far no trial has been held.
The inquiry reports that were published after the grenade attack on the Bangla New Year celebrations in 2001 at Ramna, Dhaka, (which killed 10 persons including 1 woman) and the bomb attack on a large Awami League rally on 21 August, (which killed Ivy Rehman and 20 others including 4 women) were incomplete and lacking in credibility.
After each such incident the Prime Minister, Cabinet members and high-ranking officials promised to bring the culprits to justice.
These promises ring hollow to the citizens of Bangladesh, as successive grenade attacks and bomb explosions have led to the killing of Ahsanullah Master, a member of Parliament from Ghazipur and a popular Awami League leader, several well-respected journalists, such as Manik Shaha and Humayun Kabir and political activists.

In the name of quelling terror attacks and law enforcement, officially commissioned forces such as RAB, Cheeta, Cobra and the police have killed alleged suspects in custody, without giving them the benefit of a trial, and referred to their deaths as "crossfire" killings,. There has been no enquiry into the causes of these "crossfire killings". On the other hand, the administration has remained passive in the face of the vigilantist killings (of 20 persons) and torture perpetrated by Siddiqul Islam aka Bangla Bhai's and his gang in the name of suppressing Shorbohara members. Bangla Bhai remains at large inspite of an order of arrest from the Prime Minister reported in the media in 2004. Several ministers and relevant police officials have dismissed Bangla Bhai as a figment of media imagination despite clear evidence to the contrary.

Irresponsibe acts by those in the highest seats of government and the lack of sincere, committed, and sustained measures for law enforcement has created tremendous insecurity for citizens' and is a cause for deep social unrest. The growing tendency to extra-judicial killings has created an alarming deterioration in the law-and-order situation.
It has curtailed citizens' rights to freedom of political participation and cultural activities. We demand an end to this situation. We also demand that the administration take immediate steps to ensure security for all public and private functions, political and cultural activities (such as the traditional Jatra), and women's sports (wrestling, swimming, football), and to create an environment for the practice of citizen's rights.

We grieve for each life that has been lost, for each life that has been maimed or injured. At the same time, we condemn the terror attacks in the strongest possible language.

We demand:

- an independent and transparent investigation into each bomb blast and grenade attack (free of government intervention);
- medical care for those injured in such attacks and compensation for their families;
- the culprits be identified, and tried and that those found guilty be duly punished
- steps be taken to improve the law and order situation,
- that newly constituted forces stop using methods that are leading to custodial deaths or other forms of torture in the name of law enforcement,
- that measures be taken to reinstate public faith in the law, courts, judicial system and in public institutions
- an environment conducive to the performance of cultural activities (Jatra, Baul singing), to women's sports events (wrestling, swimming, football).


Coalition of Outraged Women
Join us in a silent procession to protest bomb attacks, on 2 February,
2005 at 3 pm
starting from Muktangan to Shahid Minar
__________________________________________________ _____

Signatories:
1. Hena Das
2. Laila Kabir
3. Ayesha Khanam
4. Farida Akhter
5. Shirin Akhtar
6. Hasina Akhter
7. Shamim Akhter
8. Shahin Akhter
1. Prof Nasrin Ahmed
10. Khursheed Erfan Ahmed
11. Rubina Ahmed
12. Rehnuma Ahmed
13. Nahar Ahmed
14. Hasina Ahmed
15. Aasha Mehreen Amin
16. Dr Sonia Amin
17. Rabiya Sultana Anju
18. Advocate Salma Ali
19. Shaheen Anam
20. Fatema Sannaiya Ansari
21. Nasima Akhter Banu
22. Supriya Bari
23. Suraiya Begum
24. Maleka Begum
25. Bilkis Nahar Biju
26. Kanak Chapa Chakma
27. Ila Chanda
28. Rekha Chowdhury
29. Protiti Debi
30. Aroma Dutt
31. Nina Goswami
32. Dr Sadeka Halim
33. Mita Haq
34. Adv. Sigma Huda
35. Minu Haque
36. Adv. Rezwana Hasan
37. Sara Hossain
38. Dr Hameeda Hossain
39. Fatema Hussain
40. Tasmima Hussain
41. Naseema Islam
42. Salma Jebin
43. Nargis Jaffar
44. Rounaq Jahan
45. Roushan Jahan
46. Shamshunahar Joshna
47. Umme Hasan Jhulmul
48. Shirin Kabir
49. Joshna Kabir
50. Sultana Kamal
51. Saeeda Kamal
52. Saeeda Gulrukh Kamal
53. Khaleda Khatoon
54. Khushi Kabir
55. Dr Naila Khan
56. Dr Nasreen Khondker
57. Iti Koro
58. Hameeda Akhter Laily
59. Mahbuba Akhter Lipi
60. Tayyaba Lipi
61. Shirin Banu Mithil
62. Dil Monwara Monnu
63. Munira Murshid Munni
64. Shukla Pal
65. Roushan Jahan Parveen
66. Ferdausi Priyobarshini
67. Faustina Pereira
68. Malika Perveen
69. Shahrukh Rahman
70. Shamshunahar Rahman Rose
71. Roqaiya Rafiq
72. Fahmida Rakhi
73. Dr Makhduma Nargis Ratna
74. Rasheda Begum Rekha
75. Afroza Haq Rina
76. Adv Sultana Akhter Ruby
77. Zafreen Sattar
78. Mina Sarkar
79. Masuda Akhtar Shefali
80. Hajera Sultana
81. Shimul Yusuf
82. Sara Zaker
83. Fareha Zeba
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  #14  
Old February 15, 2005, 05:28 PM
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Yameen Yameen is offline
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msg to BBgun,wasnt Ivy Rahman a vip of bangladesh??
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  #15  
Old February 17, 2005, 02:28 PM
cisco-guy cisco-guy is offline
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" Mystery shrouds as to why no helicopter was sent to bring Awami League (AL) lawmaker and former finance minister SAMS Kibria to Dhaka from Habiganj on the night of January 27 as his life might have been saved if given early treatment.

BNP General Secretary Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan has claimed a helicopter was offered but the AL did not respond. On the other hand, the AL denies this claim and Kibria's family challenged it and demanded of Bhuiyan to specify whom the offer was made to. Bhuiyan has not yet responded to this challenge.

An investigation by The Daily Star into this controversy finds that after the January 27 grenade attack, neither the AL leaders nor the local administration and police had any confirmed information about government offering a helicopter to quickly bring Kibria to Dhaka." - DailyStar

http://thedailystar.net/2005/02/18/d5021801044.htm
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