July 19, 2016 7:03:44 pm
Bangladesh on Tuesday released the CCTV footage of four suspected terrorists including a woman linked to the Dhaka cafe attack, the country’s worst terror assault by Islamists that killed 22 people, mostly foreigners.
The elite anti-crime Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) released the footage grabbed by CCTV cameras around the Holey Artisan restaurant in the diplomatic Gulshan enclave and sought people’s help to track them down.
The RAB said the four were likely to be involved in the deadly July 1 attack following which army stormed the cafe and killed six terrorists.
In the video, the four are seen strolling around the western style Spanish restaurant ahead of the attack and talking among themselves while the young woman was carrying something heavy in a vanity bag. However, none of their faces appear clear in the footage.
“We suspect the four seen in the video… we will appreciate if someone could identify them,” an RAB spokesman said.
Bangladesh launched a massive security clampdown following the July 1 attack and the subsequent July 6 assault on an Eid congregation in northern Sholakia in which two policemen and a woman were killed even as the police gunned down a suspected terrorist at the scene.
Officials later said the terrorists had planned to attack the Muslims who converged at the country’s biggest Eid congregation to offer prayers at the open ground but extra security vigil based on intelligence inputs prevented a major carnage.
“We have cancelled holidays and leaves of all police personnel and put the law enforcers and members of intelligence agencies on high alert,” home minister Asaduzzaman Khan said last night, adding that the enhanced security measures were taken on the basis of intelligence reports of possible attacks.
ISIS has claimed to have carried out the Dhaka cafe attack but Bangladesh government attributed both the assaults to homegrown militants. It, however, said the homegrown terrorists might have links with foreign terrorist outfits.
After the July 1 attack, US-based SITE Intelligence Group released a picture of three Bangladeshi youths, one covering his face with an Arabian headgear, who said the attack was just beginning of a series of similar assaults.
As part of the intensified vigil, Dhaka Metropolitan Police alerted ministers that they were facing threats of possible militant attacks.”The cabinet members can be attacked anytime. The gunmen of the ministers have been alerted. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has told us all to remain alert,” civil aviation minister Rashed Khan Menon said, citing an SMS sent to him and his other cabinet colleagues by the police.
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