Blogger Murder: Bangla Police Identifies 7 Suspects

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Dhaka: Bangladesh police on Wednesday said that seven people belonging to a home grown Islamist terror outfit orchestrated the brutal murder of a Bangladeshi-born US atheist blogger in Dhaka in February.

All seven followed Avijit Roy on the night of February 26 and then brutally hacked him to death in a busy road on the Dhaka University campus when Roy and his wife were returning from a book fair.

“In primary investigation police detectives have identified seven of those who took part in the killing,” Dhaka police spokesman Muntasirul Islam said.

“What our investigation has found is that all seven are members of the banned Islamist militant group Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT),” he said, referring to the little known group whose activists were charged with the murder of another atheist blogger.

The government banned ABT in May this year for its alleged involvement in the murders of atheist bloggers. Police earlier said the group is manned by top university graduates and members number less than 100.

The Bangladesh-born writer, who emigrated to the southern US state of Georgia some 15 years ago, was well known in his native land for his Mukto-Mona (Free-mind) blog where he railed against all forms of organised religion.

He was also the author of a series of books, including best-seller “The Virus of Faith”, which was hugely contentious in Bangladesh, an officially secular state where around 90 percent of people are Muslim.

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