Police escort detainees accused of allegedly plotting the Holey Artisan Bakery cafe attack to a courtroom on Wednesday. Munir Uz Zaman/ AFP
A special anti-terrorism tribunal in Bangladesh sentenced seven members of a banned militant group to death on Wednesday for their involvement in an attack on a Dhaka cafe that killed more than 20 people, mostly foreigners.
Judge Mojibur Rahman found the men from the Jumatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh group guilty of various charges including planning the attack, making bombs and murder. An eighth defendant was acquitted.
Rahman announced the decision in front of a packed courtroom amid heavy security.
Five militants took hostages and opened fire on the Holey Artisan Bakery on July 1, 2016. Twenty hostages were killed, including 17 from Japan, Italy and India.
The five militants were killed by commandoes during a 12-hour standoff. Two security officials were killed.
Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack, but the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina rejected it, saying the domestic group was behind it that the international group has no presence in the country.
The attack in the Muslim-majority nation followed several years of smaller attacks targeting scores of individuals deemed by extremists to be enemies of Islam, including secularists, writers, religious minorities, foreigners and activists.
The full verdict was not immediately available on Wednesday, but the judge said the men acted against the sovereignty of the country and its constitution in executing the plan for such a big attack in which foreigners had been targeted and killed.
The defendants, who have maintained their innocence, can appeal the verdict.
Half-centuries from Angelo Mathews and Kusal Mendis lifted Sri Lanka to 294-8 in the third and final one-day international as they seek to whitewash Bangladesh in a three-match series in Colombo on Wednesday.
Colombo: An all-round team performance from Sri Lanka saw them secure a comprehensive 122-run win in the third ODI against Bangladesh, completing a 3-0 series whitewash. Batting first, Sri Lanka got close to 300 on the back of a combined batting performance, headlined by Angelo Mathew’s 87,
India opener Rohit Sharma hit his fourth century of the World Cup as Virat Kohli's side booked their place in the semi-finals with a 28-run win over Bangladesh at Edgbaston on Tuesday.
The national flag of Bangladesh is red and green, but the Tigers' jersey unveiled on Monday for the tournament starting later this month in England and Wales was green and white.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) spokesman Jalal Yunus said cricket's world governing body had originally asked it to drop the red colour due to "commercial complications," but relented following a subsequent request from the BCB.
At least two political workers of the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) were killed in a clash with Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) activists in Kotli as the polling for 45 general seats of the Azad Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly (AJKLA) was held on Sunday.
The court records indicate that a lawsuit was filed by the company’s director, in which she demanded that the employee must pay an amount of Dhs738,000 that he embezzled, as well as compensate for the material and moral damages with an amount of Dhs2.5 million.
An "exceptionally large meteor" lit up in southern Norway for a brief period on Sunday, making a roaring sound as it shot across the sky.
Elon Musk's private rocket company, SpaceX, was awarded a $178 million contract to launch the first mission to explore Jupiter's icy moon Europa, to find out if it is valid for life, Nasa said on Friday.
"Space Exploration Technologies” based in Hawthorne, California, is scheduled to launch the Europa mission from Nasa's Kennedy Space Centre in Florida," Nasa said in a statement published online.