One Japanese rescued, seven unaccounted for in Dhaka siege

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Tokyo/Dhaka, July 2 (IANS) A Japanese was rescued while seven are still unaccounted for in the siege at a Dhaka cafe by Islamic State terrorists.

At least eight Japanese citizens were among the hostages taken by about six to eight IS gunmen late on Friday in the Holey Artisan Bakery in the high-security Gulshan diplomatic zone in the Bangladesh capital Dhaka.

The Bangladeshi Army said it had rescued around 13 hostages, including one Japanese and two Sri Lankan nationals, after the siege ended on Saturday morning.

At least 20 hostages were killed by the terrorists, including many foreigners, Xinhua news agency quoted the Bangladesh Army as saying.

Japan has been unable to contact the remaining seven nationals who were at the cafe, The Japan Times on Saturday quoted Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda as saying.

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The eight persons are employees of private firms engaged in a Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) construction project.

The rescued man was being treated at a hospital in Dhaka, Hagiuda said, adding that he was in stable condition.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spoke with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina over phone.

The restaurant where the gunmen had been holed up is located near the Japanese embassy in Dhaka, public broadcaster NHK reported.

According to the embassy, as many as 906 Japanese were living in Bangladesh as of October 2015.



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