Two militants killed in Bangladesh

Dhaka: Two militants of banned Islamist outfit Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) were killed in an overnight raid by security forces on their hideout at suburban Gazipur, the third such anti-militancy clampdown in the country in the past one week.

“They (JMB men) hurled bombs as we laid the siege around the incomplete abandoned building house at the midnight yesterday, prompting us to retaliate… the two JMB activists were killed instantly,” elite anti-crime Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) spokesman Mufti Mahmud Khan told newsmen.

He said RAB carried out the raid on the basis of secret information that two JMB activists are hiding inside the abandoned house. Khan said they seized four improvised grenades and a bag containing explosives and detonators required to prepare grenades from the scene during the raid.

A RAB official was also injured during the raid. Khan, who himself took part in the operation, however, did not name the militants killed in the operation, but Gazipur police identified them as Minhaz and Mahbub. Police said the two were in jail and came out on bail yesterday on a court order.

“The RAB men took the two to their custody as soon as they came out of the jail… they (RAB) did not tell us (police) anything about their operation last night,” the online version of the mass circulation Prothom Alo newspaper quoted Gazipur’s police chief as saying.

The midnight raid was the third major anti-militancy crackdown in the past one week prompted by a series of attacks in the country on marginal Muslim sects including Shiites, minority Hindus and Christians and foreigners.

On Thursday, security agencies raided a house at Mirpur in Dhaka and arrested three JMB members. Yesterday, three JMB militants were arrested along with sophisticated weapons, ammunition and army uniforms, during a raid at a hideout in the country’s eastern port city of Chittagong.