Bangladeshi opposition leader Khaleda Zia's arrest warrant issued

10:52 AM | 31 Mar, 2016
Bangladeshi opposition leader Khaleda Zia's arrest warrant issued

DHAKA (Web Desk) - A Bangladeshi court has ordered the arrest of opposition leader Khaleda Zia over a fire-bomb attack on a bus that killed two people and injured dozens last year, a prosecutor said.

The Dhaka court accused Zia and 27 other leaders and officials of her Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) of instigating the petrol bomb attack as part of a deadly anti-government campaign of arson.

Bangladesh has long been roiled by feuding between the country’s two top politicians, current Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her rival, Ms. Zia.

A political confrontation over the outcome of 2014 national elections between Ms. Hasina’s Awami League party and Ms. Zia’s Bangladesh Nationalist Party threw parts of the country into turmoil on the anniversary of the polls early last year. Street clashes, firebombings and shootings killed more than 120 supporters of the two parties, according to police and human rights groups.

The prosecutors presented charges against Ms. Zia and 27 other members of her party over an arson attack on a local bus in January 2015 that killed one person and injured several others. A judge of the Metropolitan Sessions Court issued arrest warrants against the accused, including Ms. Zia, who prosecutors alleged had ordered the attack as part of a countrywide transport blockade aimed at forcing the government to step down and call new elections.

Sanaullah Mia, a lawyer for Ms. Zia, said his client had done nothing wrong and was under virtual house arrest when the arson attack took place.