Vol. 5 Num 1106 Wed. July 11, 2007  
Letters to Editor

Naming 1971 mass killing sites

A few days ago I was reading a newspaper article: Auschwitz is officially stamped as 'German' (The Independent, London, 29-06-2007). Now a Unesco world heritage site, Auschwitz in Poland was the infamous Nazi concentration and extermination camp where Hitler killed more than one million Jews and other people during the Second World War.

In recent years, international media have mistakenly referred to it as " Polish concentration camp". In response to Polish diplomatic pressure (and much of German annoyance and shock) the Unesco recently decided to rename "Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi concentration and extermination camp 1940 1945" to "Auschwitz-Birkenau German Nazi concentration and extermination camp 1940 1945". Welcoming the Unesco decision Poland reacted by saying, "This is a victory for truth... (otherwise) Poland might be blamed for taking part in organising and running the Auschwitz".

In Bangladesh, there are about four thousand known genocide/mass killing sites of 1971 created by Pakistan occupation army and its Bengali and non-Bengali collaborators (Al- Badr, Razakars, Al-Shams, Bihari gangs etc.). I am requesting the government, Liberation War Museum and other authorities concerned to scientifically preserve and properly rename these mass killing sites.

For example, Rangpur Cantonment mass killing field (Rakto Gaurab) could be renamed as 'Rangpur Cantonment mass killing field of the Pakistan army (March, 1971)'; Rayer Bazar Intellectuals killing field could be renamed as 'Rayer Bazar Intellectuals killing site of the Al-Badr (November-December, 1971)' ; Adityapur mass graves could be renamed as 'Balaganj-Adityapur mass graves by Razakar collaborators of Pakistan army (June, 1971)' ; Mirpur Jallad Khana killing field could be renamed as 'Mirpur-Jallad Khana mass killing well by Bihari collaborators of the Pakistan army (1971)'.

We also hope that all war criminals - Pakistanis and Bangladeshis -will be brought to justice soon.