Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader says he is waiting to see if Abdur Razzaq’s resignation from Jamaat-e-Islami is part of some party strategy before taking any further steps on the matter.
But the road transport and bridges minister was adamant that the trials of 1971 war criminals would continue even if the Islamist party apologised for its role in the Liberation War.
Razzaq, an assistant secretary general of the Jamaat-e-Islami, resigned from the post from the UK on Friday. The move comes amid pressure on the party through the war crimes trials and its loss of official registration.
Razzaq has called on the party to apologise for its role in 1971 and for new structural reforms to the party.
Reporters asked Quader, the general secretary of the ruling Awami League, several questions regarding the news and Jamaat at the Awami League president’s office in Dhaka’s Dhanmondi on Saturday.
Asked whether the Awami League would applaud an apology from Jamaat regarding its role in 1971, he said:
“This is a matter of discussion, but it (their apology) is still limited to rumours. They have not made any official statement or apology.”
“But we will not stop the trials against those who have committed inhumane war crimes.”
Asked what he thought of Razzaq’s resignation, Quader said:
“This is his personal decision, but it depends on the decision made by the party. Their intention isn’t clear yet. Let it become more transparent.”
Asked whether the Awami League would welcome a new Jamaat, Quader said: “The Awami League has made no decision on the matter.”
But if the essence of the party does not change it is a matter of old goods being repackaged, reports bdnews24 citing Quader.
“If they maintain their ideals, but adopt a new name, what is the difference?”
“We must wait and see. There is a lot of talk in the media. Things must become clearer. Why should we make any comments before then?”
Asked whether this could be a plan to restore the registration of the party, the Awami League general secretary said:
“It may be a plan. Why have they decided to ask forgiveness 47 years after our independence? We must consider whether it is part of a strategy.”