Bangladesh to release former PM Khaleda Zia from prison

The Bangladesh government has decided to suspend the effectiveness of BNP chief Khaleda Zia’s sentences and release her from prison conditionally, citing “humanitarian reasons” amid a surge in coronavirus cases

Mar 24, 2020
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Dhaka: The Bangladesh government has decided to suspend the effectiveness of BNP chief Khaleda Zia’s sentences and release her from prison conditionally, citing “humanitarian reasons” amid a surge in coronavirus cases.

Khaleda will have to receive treatment at her Dhaka home and will not be allowed to travel abroad, Law Minister Anisul Huq said at a media briefing on Tuesday afternoon, explaining the key conditions for her freedom. Her sentences will remain suspended for six months, bdnews24.com reported.

"We have decided to release her on humanitarian grounds as per the instructions of the prime minister,” Anisul said. "She can receive treatment staying at her home but she cannot go abroad."

Khaleda has already served out 25 months behind bars. The decision of the suspension of her sentences comes during a worldwide crisis over the novel coronavirus outbreak which has led to quarantines, isolations, lockdowns and transport shutdowns across the globe.

Khaleda, who is ailing, had been receiving treatment in prison. Khaleda has been in prison since February 2018 after she was sentenced to a total of 17 years in two graft cases.