Bangladesh court sentences 8 from banned Islamist group to death for role in 2001 bombing

A court in Bangladesh's capital has sentenced eight people, including a top leader of a banned Islamist group, to death for their roles in a bombing at a New Year's celebration concert 13 years ago.

Judge Ruhul Amin told a packed court Monday that six others had been sentenced to life in prison for the bombing that killed 10 people and injured dozens of others at a park in downtown Dhaka in 2001.

The leader of the banned group Harkatul Jihad, Mufti Abdul Hannan, is among those sentenced to death.

The group says that New Year celebrations, such as singing and dancing, are anti-Islamic.

Four of the convicts were tried in absentia.