11,307 arrested in Bangladesh anti-militant drive

Dhaka, June 14 (IANS) At least 11,307 people have been arrested within four days of an ongoing week-long anti-militant drive in Bangladesh, police said on Tuesday.

“As many as 3,115 more people were arrested on the fourth day of the drive,” Xinhua news agency quoted a senior police official as saying.

Police earlier detained 8,192 people, including 119 suspected militants, in the first 72 hours of the clampdown.

Among the 145 suspected militants arrested so far, most are members of banned Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB).

Also on Tuesday ,top JMB leader Garib Ullah was captured at his hideout in a forest in Mymensingh district.

The official said Ullah was a close associate of Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai, the executed second-in-command of a banned militant outfit.

Amid a new surge in militancy, Bangladesh on Friday launched a special drive aimed at dismantling terrorist outfits.

JMB, campaigning for establishment of Islamic rule in Bangladesh, carried out a series of bombings in the country, including Dhaka on August 17, 2005, leaving two people dead and 150 others injured.

Hundreds of JMB leaders and activists were rounded up while six top leaders of the group, including Shaikh Abdur Rahman, were hanged in 2007.

A number of secularist writers, bloggers and publishers have been killed or seriously injured in attacks carried out by extremists since 2013.

–IANS

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