Six Islamist militants held in B`desh: Report

Last Updated: Sunday, August 2, 2009 - 21:02

Dhaka: Authorities in Bangladesh have
arrested six members of the banned militant outfit Harkatul
Jihad Islami, amid fears that insurgents were trying to
regroup in the country.

In an coordinated anti-terror drive, the elite Rapid
Action Battalion (Rab) arrested the six suspected militants,
including two leaders, following intelligence inputs about
insurgents planing subversive activities in the country.

Belonging to the Harkatul Jihad Islami (Huji), they
were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment along with
35 others in 1998. The militants were untraced for eight years
since they were freed on bail soon after the BNP-Jamaat-led
alliance assumed power in 2001, a newspaper said

RAB arrested two suspected militants from the capital,
one in Feni and three in Chittagong and Cox`s Bazar, it said.

According to sources, some of the 41 fugitive came
under the spotlight following recent intelligence reports
about their attempt to smuggle arms into the country through
Naikhangchhari border for subversive activities.

The two arrested at Nababer Bagh in the capital have
been identified as Abul Khaer, 40, of Manikganj and Moulana
Mohammad Musa, 38, of Chandpur. The four other are Abdul Aziz,
45, of Feni, Razaul Karim, 40, and Anwar Uddin Zaved of
Chakaria in Cox`s Bazar and Abdullah Al Hossain of Banshkhali
in Chittagong.

"We gathered information that the HUJI members tried
to smuggle in firearms through Zarullachhari at Naikhangchhari
in Bandarban, and were recruiting people to strengthen the the
organisation," a top RAB official was quoted as saying by the
Bangladeshi daily.

The HUJI was blamed for attempting to kill former
British High Commissioner Anwar Choudhury at a Muslim shrine
in northeastern Sylhet town in May 2005.

Choudhury was injured and but three people including
his bodyguard were killed. About 50 other people thronging the
shrine, 300 km (187 miles) from the capital, at the time
were also hurt.

Earlier in August, 2004, HUJI in a grenade attack
killed 23 people and wounded some 150 others in Dhaka at a
rally attended by then opposition leader Sheikh Hasina.

Amid earlier warning that militants were trying to
regroup, the police and paramilitary forces conducted massive
anti-militancy operations across the country.

Bureau Report

First Published: Sunday, August 2, 2009 - 21:02

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