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Ottawa loses in court battle with Bangladesh over alleged coup plotter

OTTAWA — Bangladesh has won a round in its court battle with Canada about a man accused of taking part in a 1975 coup that resulted in the death of the south Asian country’s president.

In a ruling released today, the Federal Court of Canada has ordered Ottawa to revisit its decision not to disclose information to Bangladesh about Nur Chowdhury’s immigration status in Canada.

Chowdhury and his wife, citizens of Bangladesh, came to Canada as visitors in 1996 and soon applied for refugee protection.

Chowdhury, meanwhile, was convicted in Bangladesh in absentia in 1998 for taking part in the coup that involved the assassination of then-president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his family.

In 2006, Chowdhury was found to be inadmissible to Canada due to serious criminality, but he has not been deported.

Last year, the immigration minister refused to invoke an exception in the federal privacy law that would have allowed him to divulge information to Bangladesh about Chowdhury’s status in Canada.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 18, 2019.

The Canadian Press