Bangladesh PM hails killing of mil­i­tant

The Myanmar Times - - World -

BANGLADESH’S prime min­is­ter said the na­tion was “free of an­other curse” af­ter po­lice stormed a mil­i­tant hide­out, shoot­ing dead the sus­pected mas­ter­mind of an hor­rific at­tack on a cafe that killed 22 hostages.

The bod­ies of three Muslim ex­trem­ists were found af­ter an hour­long gun battle with militants in Narayan­ganj, a city 25 kilo­me­tres south of Dhaka, on Au­gust 27.

Prime Min­is­ter Sheikh Hasina praised po­lice and in­tel­li­gence agen­cies for the op­er­a­tion which killed Tamim Chowd­hury, a Bangladeshi-Cana­dian be­lieved to have planned the at­tack.

“The main mas­ter­mind of the Ho­ley Ar­ti­san [at­tack] has been elim­i­nated,” Ms Hasina told re­porters at her of­fice, re­fer­ring to the Gul­shan cafe in­ci­dent.

“The na­tion has be­come free of an­other curse,” she said, adding that the “elim­i­na­tion of the ex­trem­ists” would bol­ster “peo­ple’s con­fi­dence”.

The po­lice raid came two days be­fore US Sec­re­tary of State John Kerry is set to ar­rive in Bangladesh, the high­est-ranked Western of­fi­cial to visit the South Asian na­tion since the at­tack.

Of­fi­cials said se­cu­rity is­sues, in­clud­ing Dhaka-Wash­ing­ton anti-ter­ror co­op­er­a­tion, will fea­ture dur­ing Mr Kerry’s talks with his Bangladeshi coun­ter­part to­day.

Thirty-year-old Mr Chowd­hury, who re­turned from Canada in 2013, had ear­lier been named by po­lice as the sus­pected mas­ter­mind of the at­tack on the cafe in Gul­shan, an up­scale Dhaka neigh­bour­hood.

Po­lice say Mr Chowd­hury had led and fi­nanced ef­forts to rad­i­calise young Mus­lims since re­turn­ing from Canada three years ago. His role in fos­ter­ing ex­trem­ism was re­vealed dur­ing the in­ter­ro­ga­tion of Rak­ibul Hasan, 25, who was ar­rested in a raid on a mil­i­tant hide­out in July.

Photo: AFP

Bangladesh po­lice es­cort the bod­ies of sus­pected militants fol­low­ing the storm­ing of a mil­i­tant hide­out in Narayan­ganj, some 25 kilo­me­tres (16 miles) south of Dhaka, on Au­gust 27.

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