BNC Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia
An arrest warrant was issued Wednesday, March 30, 2016, against former Bangladesh Prime Minister Khaleda Zia. Picture: Dhaka, Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia attends a rally in Dhaka Jan. 20, 2014.Reuters

A Bangladeshi court has issued an arrest warrant against former Prime Minister and opposition leader Khaleda Zia for boycotting court hearings in connection with two corruption cases against her.

The order from Dhaka's anti-corruption court comes amid a political stand-off between Zia's Bangladesh National Party and the ruling Awami League. Her supporters went on a strike and blocked roads and railways last January, reports BBC.  Zia has been kept under house arrest in her own office for trying to enforce the nationwide transport blockade in efforts to topple the government of her bitter rival Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

The BNP demanded a fresh election, claiming that the one that brought Hasina to power was rigged. The ensuing protests unleashed a spate of deadly violence across the country leaving more than 100 people dead.

The arrest warrant for not attending the hearing comes despite Zia's house arrest since January. Protesting the court's decision, Zia's lawyer Sanaullah Miah said on Wednesday, "There is no justice in the country." 

Zia has been charged with embezzling $650,000 of charitable funds during her term as the Prime Minister from 2001-2006. Proven true, the charges could land Zia in jail for the rest of her life.

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