Guest Post by MAHMUD RAHMAN
Mahmud Rahman is a writer and translator from Bangladesh who lives in California. He is one of 23 persons who are facing possible contempt of court charges from the International Crimes Tribunal 2 in Dhaka for having signed a statement expressing concern over the same tribunal’s contempt of court sentence on the journalist David Bergman for some of his blog posts.
When I think about the state of free speech in the land of my birth, my memories take me back to 1970-71 when I was a higher secondary student in Dhaka, a time of upheaval when East Pakistan was making its way towards independent Bangladesh. Officially we were still under martial law, Ayub’s decade-long dictatorship deposed in favor of Yahya’s rule that came with the promise of elections. Political parties could organize, detainees were set free, the press could publish with fewer restrictions, and…
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