International Forum for Secular Bangladesh (IFSB) Switzerland chapter on Saturday held demonstrations at the Broken Chair square in front of the UN building in Geneva demanding recognition of the Bangladesh genocide perpetrated by the Pakistan Army in 1971.
A total of 25 Bangladeshi diasporas from Europe gathered in front of the United Nations office to seek justice against the 1971 genocide by Pakistan and for its recognition by the international community.
'Genocide Day' has been observed in Bangladesh since 2017 against the atrocities committed by the Pakistan Army on civilians on the night of March 25, 1971, when it launched 'Operation Searchlight' in Dhaka to crush the Bengali nationalist movement.
Leaders of all European Freedom Fighter Sangsad of Bangladesh, Awami League members of Switzerland, and other International NGOs also participated in the protest.
Tazul Islam, a Bangladesh freedom fighter from Zurich urged the UN Human Rights Council to recognize March 25 as "Bangladesh genocide day".
Khalilur Rahman, Chairperson of the IFSB, Switzerland chapter said that BNP and Jamat are terrorists in Bangladesh.
Aminul Rahman Khusru, another Bangladeshi freedom fighter from Frankfurt also condemned Pakistan Army for the genocide.
Mohsin Rahman Suman, Sahal Alam Agor, Suman Chakma, and Mohammad Mojammel, all active members of Switzerland Awami League raised slogans against BNP/Jamat and termed them as collaborators of the Genocide of Bengalis who were associated with Pakistan Army during torture, sexual abuse, and mass killings in 1971 war.
On December 16, 1971, Pakistan Army surrendered to a joint India-Bangladesh force, formally making Bangladesh a new nation under the leadership of Sheikh Mujibur Rehman.
The Broken Chair sculpture symbolizes both fragility and strength, imbalance and stability, violence, and dignity.
Broken Chair is the work of renowned sculptor Daniel Berset in 1997 at the request of Humanity & Inclusion (the new name of Handicap International).
Made of Douglas fir wood, it stands 39 feet tall at the Place des Nations, in front of the United Nations headquarters in Geneva. Broken Chair stands in delicate balance on three legs--the fourth having been violently blown off as if by an explosive charge.
The Broken Chair has a way of showing that even wounded victims of war are still standing tall with dignity.
Meanwhile, in Dhaka, Bangladesh Muktijuddha Mancha also organised a demonstration-cum-discussion on Saturday in front of the National Museum in Shahbag against the alleged genocide of 30 lakh people by the Pakistan army during the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971.
The protesters also demanded that the day be marked, henceforth, by the UN as the "International Genocide Day."
The Bangladesh Muktijuddha Mancha held the protest from 3 pm to 4.30 pm. Addressing participants, the party's general secretary, Al Mamun, demanded the recognition of March 25 as 'International Genocide Day' and justice from the United Nations and International Criminal Court for the Pakistan Army's 'Operation Searchlight', which led to the alleged genocide and mass rape.
During the demonstration-cum-discussion, MM chairman Aminul Islam Bulbul criticised China, claiming it had helped Pakistan by supplying Chinese bullets, which were used in the killing of many Bengalis.
Sculpturist Rasha and MM Leader Sonet Mahmud lauded the speeches and efforts of the visiting Barrister Peter Burgess, president of Asia Justice and Right (AJAR) and International Human Rights Expert, who has been taking up the cause of justice for the genocide victims, and, delivering lectures at various fora on the issue, during his ongoing visit to Bangladesh. (ANI)