DHAKA, Bangladesh — A court docket in Bangladesh sentenced to demise 5 members of an Islamist militant group on Tuesday for killing an American blogger vital of non secular extremism six years in the past.

Avijit Roy, a United States citizen of Bangladeshi origin, was hacked to demise by machete-wielding assailants in February 2015 whereas returning house together with his spouse from a Dhaka guide honest. His spouse and fellow blogger Rafida Ahmed suffered head accidents and misplaced a finger.

“Costs towards them had been proved past any doubt. The court docket gave them the best punishment,” the general public prosecutor Golam Sarwar Khan mentioned after the decision, amid tight safety on the Particular Anti-Terrorism Tribunal within the capital, Dhaka.

The court docket additionally jailed one man for all times within the assault, Mr. Khan mentioned.

He mentioned the six males convicted on Tuesday belong to the al Qaeda-inspired home militant group Ansar Ullah Bangla Group, which the police say was behind the murders of greater than a dozen secular activists and bloggers.

Syed Ziaul Haq, a sacked military main believed to be the chief of the group and who masterminded the killing, and one different member of the group had been tried in absentia and obtained demise sentences, Mr. Khan mentioned.

Nazrul Islam, a protection lawyer for the six males, mentioned they might enchantment towards the sentences within the increased court docket.

Muslim-majority Bangladesh noticed a string of lethal assaults between 2013 and 2016 focusing on bloggers, secular activists and non secular minorities, claimed by Islamic State or al Qaeda-aligned teams.

Probably the most critical assault got here in July 2016, when gunmen stormed a restaurant within the diplomatic quarter of Dhaka and killed 22 folks, most of them foreigners.

After the cafe siege, greater than 100 suspected militants had been killed and tons of extra had been arrested as the federal government cracked down on Islamist teams to protect its picture as a reasonable Muslim nation.