Bangladesh bans 3 on mo­tor­cy­cle af­ter killing of po­lice­man’s wife

The Jerusalem Post - - INTERNATIONAL NEWS -

DHAKA, June 6 (Reuters) - Bangladesh slapped a ban on more than one per­son rid­ing pil­lion on a mo­tor­cy­cle on Mon­day, a day af­ter the wife of a prom­i­nent se­cu­rity of­fi­cial was shot dead by three sus­pected Is­lamist mil­i­tants rid­ing a mo­tor­bike.

Mah­muda Ak­tar, the wife of Su­per­in­ten­dent of Police Babul Ak­tar who is known for his se­cu­rity cam­paigns against mil­i­tants, was stabbed and shot dead by the three in the south­east­ern port city of Chit­tagong on Sun­day.

Four peo­ple have been picked up for ques­tion­ing and the mo­tor­bike used in the killing has been re­cov­ered, Chit­tagong city Police Com­mis­sioner Iqbal Ba­har told re­porters.

“Only two peo­ple are (now) al­lowed to ride a mo­tor­cy­cle, not three,” In­te­rior Min­is­ter Asaduz­za­man Khan told re­porters, adding mo­tor­cy­clists will not even be al­lowed to carry a spouse and child, a com­mon prac­tice across South Asia.

Khan said the killing was meant to de­mor­alise police of­fi­cers and the gov­ern­ment would look into the mat­ter of se­cu­rity for their fam­i­lies. Also on Sun­day, ma­chete-wield­ing as­sailants killed a Chris­tian gro­cer in a sep­a­rate in­ci­dent.

Both at­tacks ap­peared to be the work of Is­lamist mil­i­tants who have killed at least 30 peo­ple, in­clud­ing re­li­gious mi­nori­ties, lib­eral blog­gers and aca­demics, since Fe­bru­ary last year, police said.

Bangladesh im­posed a sim­i­lar ban on three rid­ing a mo­tor­cy­cle - but later re­laxed it - af­ter two for­eign­ers were shot dead a few days apart by masked men rid­ing on mo­tor­cy­cles late last year.

Is­lamic State and al Qaeda have claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for many of the 30 killings but the gov­ern­ment de­nies that ei­ther group has a pres­ence in Bangladesh and says home-grown rad­i­cals are re­spon­si­ble.

An­a­lysts say a cli­mate of in­tol­er­ance in Bangladeshi pol­i­tics has both mo­ti­vated and pro­vided cover for per­pe­tra­tors of crimes of re­li­gious ha­tred.

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