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Bangladesh ambassador condemns imam murder, calls for tough punishment

Bahrain News
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Raji Unnikrishnan

BANGLADESH’S ambassador to Bahrain has called for “exemplary punishment” for one of his nationals accused of brutally killing and dismembering a Bahraini imam.

In a statement issued yesterday, Major General (Rtd) K M Mominur Rahman expressed “deep shock at the brutal killing” of Shaikh Abduljalil Hmood, who was slain by a Bangladeshi muezzin (prayer caller) last Saturday at the Bin Shiddah Mosque in Muharraq, where they both worked.

The 39-year-old prayer caller was arrested the following day when he was caught dumping plastic bags containing body parts near a scrap yard in Askar.

He has since confessed to the crime during questioning by the Public Prosecution, while several other people have also been arrested for aiding and abetting.

“The (Bangladesh) Embassy condemns this horrendous inhuman act of crime in the strongest possible terms,” said the ambassador in the statement.

“The killer should be given exemplary punishment.”

Major General (Rtd) Rahman told the GDN after issuing the statement that he will fight to ensure “these few criminals” do not destroy the life the Bangladeshi community has built in Bahrain.

“We are co-ordinating with the Bahraini government to ensure that we clean up Bahrain from criminals, at least from the Bangladesh point of view,” he said.

“I have also asked our government to ensure that our legal system doesn’t spare them as well.

“Ninety per cent of (the Bangladeshi) population are involved in hard labour to build Bahrain, the skyscrapers around us, the gardens, the farms and the clean roads and cars – my men contribute to these.

“They take meagre salaries and support five to 10 people back home, sacrificing their family life to fulfil a dream with which they came here.

“They may sleep on the roads but wish to live with dignity and I will not allow these few criminals to steal them of their dignity.”

He stressed that the embassy has a “zero-tolerance approach” to crime and pledged a crackdown on criminal organisations.

“My heart is broken and the level to which my community and people have been downgraded (with this incident) is unimaginable,” added the ambassador.

“I will not rest until I ensure that all the culprits are caught and justice is served.

“My approach is zero-tolerance and I will not compromise on this.

“I am in touch with top officials at the Interior and Foreign ministries and I promise a major crackdown on these criminals, who can’t afford to play with our dignities.

“I understand that the accused has confessed and that he hired people to kill and cut the body into pieces.

“If this is the case, I don’t have any sympathy for him and I don’t want to meet him, and I reiterate my zero-tolerance on crime stand.”

The GDN reported last week that the murder suspect was previously blacklisted by the Bangladesh Embassy for his record of conning expatriates in a bogus visa racket.

Meanwhile, the embassy is in the process of repatriating the muezzin’s family – his wife Dalia Siddique Akhi, four-year-old daughter and 14-month-old son.

The GDN reported on Wednesday that the muezzin reportedly broke down in tears as he confessed to his wife hours before his arrest.

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