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Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

to try and stop a growing wave of bru­tal at­tacks on mi­nori­ties and ac­tivists.

Since the crack­down be­gan on Thurs­day, po­lice have ar­rested 5,324 peo­ple, in­clud­ing 85 sus­pected Is­lamist rad­i­cals, said po­lice spokesman Kam­rul Ah­san. The ma­jor­ity of those ar­rested have petty crim­i­nal records. More ar­rests are ex­pected through this week.

At least 18 peo­ple, in­clud­ing athe­ist blog­gers, for­eign aid work­ers and re­li­gious com­mu­nity and raised ques­tions about whether Bangladesh’s sec­u­lar govern­ment can pro­tect mi­nori­ties and sec­u­lar writers and in­tel­lec­tu­als in the Mus­lim-ma­jor­ity na­tion.

The crack­down be­gan four days af­ter the wife of a po­lice su­per­in­ten­dent who led drives against Is­lamist mil­i­tants and drug car­tels was shot and stabbed to death in the south­east­ern city of Chit­tagong.

Days af­ter that at­tack, Prime Min­is­ter Sheikh Hasina vowed to root out rad­i­cals

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