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Monday, January 29, 2007

Bangladesh Islamic group protests against women's cricket

Cricinfo staff and agencies

January 28, 2007

A Muslim group has protested against the new women's league in Bangladesh, labelling it "anti-Islamic". They have called on the interim government to scrap the ten-team tournament in Dhaka, just hours after the organisers were celebrating a trouble-free launch.

The hardline Islamic Constitution Movement, which has no representation in parliament, said women's cricket, and other field sports such as football, represented "alien culture." They called the league "anti-Islamic."

In a statement they said: "Women's cricket and football in front of thousands of spectators is against the country's tradition and culture and also is anti-Muslim civilization."

The Bangladesh Cricket Board say the ten-team tournament will continue as planned, however - as will plans for the first Bangladesh women's side. The top thirty players from the competition will be chosen for further training following the final.

Bangladesh is a Muslim-majority country of 144 million that witnessed a spurt of militant attacks in late 2005 by a group that wanted courts to adhere to Islamic law. Six militants of the outlawed Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh were sentenced to death in the attacks which claimed 28 lives.


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