Bangladesh Arrests Over 8,500 Islamist

According to latest reports from Press Trust of India (PTI) over 8,500 people, including 119 suspected militants have been arrested in Bangladesh. This serious action was taken in the wake of targeted killing of secular writers and minority Hindu population in a Muslim-majority nation. Dhaka Police Headquarters spokesman AKM Quamrul Ahsan told reporters "During the anti-crime clampdown we have arrested 8,569 people and of them 119 are suspected militants".

In the last one year, there have been a rise of targeted killings in Bangladesh carried out by Islamists who it seems have sworn an allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS) and al-Qaeda. However, the Government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has denied the presence of these groups in Bangladesh. Speaking in a meeting of her ruling Awami League party PM Sheikh Hasina promised to end violence and vowed to catch "each and every killer".

For the past one year journalists, atheist and minorities have been constantly targeted by Islamist groups like Jagrota Muslim Janata Bangladesh (JMJB) and Jamaat-e- Islami. These are deeply radicalized groups whose leaders were hanged recently for their involvement in the 1971 Bangladesh genocide during which time over 3 million Bangladeshis were murders and tens of thousands of women raped by the Pakistan Army who took the active part in killing the intelligentsia of then East Pakistan.

This crackdown is very important because in the last few years Bangladesh have made a lot of progress on the economic front and the ruling Awami League party and its PM Sheikh Hasina have done a lot to elevate people from poverty. Also, secular ideals have been promoted making Bangladesh a more pluralistic society where everyone will enjoy the same rights.