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Dhaka police arrest three members of Pakistan Taliban

Seize bomb-making manual and other materials

ucanews.com reporter and AFP, Dhaka
Bangladesh

January 20, 2014

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Bangladesh police on Sunday arrested three members of a Pakistan militant organization allegedly carrying a bomb-making manual and other materials, police officials said on Monday.

The three arrested – identified as Mehmud, 26, Usman, 23, and Fakrul Hasan, 50 – admitted under police questioning to having received training from the Pakistani Taliban in carrying out attacks, A Dhaka police spokesman said.

The arrests come as Bangladesh police step up a security crackdown following January 5 elections that were boycotted by the main opposition party and its Islamist allies and marred by deadly unrest.

“These men entered Bangladesh to carry out subversive activities before and after the national election held on January 5. They also had long-term plans to spread militancy in the country,” Monirul Islam, a joint commissioner of Dhaka police, said during a press briefing on Monday.

“A bomb-making manual and a laptop containing information on military training were seized from them,” Dhaka Metropolitan Police said in a statement.

The three migrated to Pakistan from western Myanmar and were later trained by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the statement added.

“They have special trainings in car bombs. They took training on grenades and IEDs from the main trainers of the TTP in Pakistan’s territory of Waziristan,” Islam said.

Widely known as moderate Muslim-majority nation, Bangladesh has seen as sharp rise in Islamic militancy since 2005, when two militant outfits Harkat-ul-Jihad (HUJI) and Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) carried out a string of bomb attacks across the country.

Security forces have arrested more than 1,000 protesters since the elections, which were boycotted by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party and its allies, including the largest Islamist party Jamaat-e-Islami.

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