DHAKA, Bangladesh (AFP)--Microfinance pioneer and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Muhammad Yunus appeared in a Bangladesh court Tuesday, in a defamation case dating back to 2007, a court official said.

Yunus, the founder of Grameen Bank, a microfinance organization that shared the Nobel Prize with him in 2006, appeared for about 10 minutes in the court about 100 kilometers north of Dhaka, said court inspector Shahid Shoqrana.

"The court has granted him bail. His lawyers argued that he is a major international personality so it is impossible for him to appear in court every day. The court has allowed a nominee to appear for him," Shoqrana said.

The case, being heard in Memensingh district, revolves around comments made by Yunus in a 2007 interview, in which he is accused of defaming Bangladeshi politicians.

A complaint was lodged in January 2007 by a low-ranking official of a minor left-leaning party.

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