About two dozen atheist writers, publishers, members of religious minorities, social activists and foreign aid workers have been slain since 2013.”
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors jihadist activity online. The Amaq news agency, affiliated with IS, also posted photos purportedly showing hostages’ bodies. The authenticity of the images could not be confirmed.
With the sound of gunfire and explosions, local TV stations reported that the rescue operation began at 7:40 a.m. It included army personnel with automatic weapons and at least seven armoured vehicles and ambulances. The attackers did not respond to authorities’ calls for negotiation, Masud said.
On Friday evening, many people headed to the popular bakery and restaurant that serves Spanish food and is patronized by residents of Gulshan, an affluent neighborhood where most of the foreign embassies are located. The restaurant overlooks a lake and on pleasant evenings, diners often chose to eat outdoors. thought it was someone taking shelter in the restaurant’s doorway.
“Then I saw that he had weapons. On seeing that, I ran toward the back of the restaurant. He fired while I was running but I was not sure if he was targeting me because I did not look back,” the survivor said.
He said he ran and told everyone working inside the bakery, and many people ran out using the back door.
“Those who could not hear me, or understand me, did not leave because this happened in a short span of time,” he said.
Rezaul Karim, the father of a Bangladeshi businessman who was rescued along with his family, said the attackers did not harm any hostage who could recite verses from the Islamic holy book, Quran.
Karim said his son, Hasnat, had gone to the restaurant along with his wife and two children to celebrate the birthday of his elder daughter when the attack happened. “He told me, ‘Please