Cafe attack ‘mastermind’ named
A CANADIAN citizen was one of the masterminds behind a mass killing at a café here, Bangladesh police said, after new information came to light following a raid on an extremist hideout.
Tamim Chowdhury, whose whereabouts are unknown, returned to Bangladesh from Canada three years ago. He has since led and financed efforts to radicalise young Muslims, officers with knowledge of a probe into recent attacks said.
The dual Canadian-Bangladeshi national, in his early 30s, is thought by counter-terrorism officials to lead a faction of the Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) militant group, blamed for scores of murders of foreigners and religious minorities.
Five assailants stormed an upscale cafe in the Gulshan neighbourhood on July 1 and killed 20 hostages, including 18 foreigners in Bangladesh’s deadliest single militant attack.
A week later, gunmen attacked an Eid prayer gathering of 250,000 people, killing three.
“We have learnt that Tamim Chowdhury is one of the masterminds of the attacks of Gulshan cafe and Sholakia Eid prayer ground,” an officer said.
“He trained the extremists behind the two attacks and the nine extremists killed at Kalyanpur on July 26,” the officer said. –