Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Islamist Machete Murders Of Writers In Bangladesh

Islamist murder victim Tanay Mojundar.
Al-Qaeda Claims Bangladesh Machete Murders, Including LGBT Editor. The banned group Ansar-al Islam, the Bangladeshi branch of al-Qaida on the Indian subcontinent, has claimed responsibility for the killings of gay rights activist Mannan and his friend in the capital, Dhaka.

The Ansar al-Islam, the Bangladesh branch of the al-Qaeda in Indian Sub-Continent (AQIS), has claimed responsibility for the death of at least three secular writers hacked to death in the past year, including the murder this week of the editor of an LGBT magazine.

BDNews24 conveyed that an email allegedly sent from Mufti Abdullah Ashraf, the spokesman for the branch, to Bangladesh media said that AQIS committed the murder of Niladry Chattopadhya, a secular writer. His widow told The Guardian she lives in hiding. “I cannot lead a normal life. I am afraid of traveling alone,” explained Asha Mone. “Each new killing is only increasing the sense of fear.”

In August, she watched extreme Islamists butcher her husband Chattopadhya, also known as Niloy Neel, in their apartment. The men told the couple they wanted to rent a flat but attacked him when they entered the home. Officials told AFP that Mone “was confined to another room” where she screamed, “Save us!” but no one answered. “We generally find our homes safe, but are we really safe?” she said.

Officials have arrested suspects for his death, but have made minimal progress in the investigation “in the killing of blogger Ahmed Rajib Haider.”

“We are losing hope. I have no contact with the police or even any update of the case,” continued Mone. “The progressive minds are being suppressed with machetes and cleavers. Unless the government brings the perpetrators to book, these incidents will continue to happen.”

She added: “I feel guilty at times that I couldn’t protect him. But now I think I have to survive to seek justice.” Three attackers have killed three more people in Bangladesh since these murders, including the editor of the country’s only LGBT magazine.

Xulhaz Mannan also worked at the U.S. embassy. A mob killed him and another man at a Dhaka flat, leaving one injured. At least five or six men arrived at the flat “posing as couriers.” They claimed to have a package for Mannan. When they entered, the men hacked Mannan and his friend Majumdar to death with machetes.

Al-Qaeda also took responsibility for these deaths. They went after these men because they saw them as “pioneers of practicing and promoting homosexuality.” This news broke just a day after authorities apprehended a student in connection to the hacking death of an English professor.

“We haven’t arrested him or brought any charges against him yet,” explained Rajshahi police commissioner Mohammad Shamsuddin. “He is a suspect, and we’ve taken him to our custody for interrogation.” English professor Rezaul Karim Siddique, 58, worked at Rajshahi University. Someone attacked him from behind as he waited for a bus. The attacker stabbed him in the neck.

Earlier this month, men attacked and hacked to death liberal blogger Nazimuddin Samad with machetes after he left his law classes at Jagganath University. Samad often criticized religion on his Facebook page.

A Bangladeshi secular blogger hacked to death by Extremist Muslims in Dakha City.

(CNN) Ansar al-Islam, the Bangladeshi division of al Qaeda in the Indian subcontinent, has claimed responsibility for the killings of two LGBT-rights activists who were hacked to death Monday evening in Dhaka. The claim was made in a statement distributed on social media.

USAID, an American government agency for poverty prevention, identified one victim as Xulhaz Mannan. Mannan worked at the organization but also served as editor of the country's first LGBT magazine. "Today, USAID lost one of our own," the statement said.

Murdered USAID employee and LGBT editor Mannan.
"He was the kind of person willing to fight for what he believed in, someone ready to stand up for his own rights and the rights of others," USAID Administrator Gayle Smith said in a statement.

The other victim was Tanay Mojumdar. Like Mannan, he was openly gay and was a leader in the fight for LGBT rights, a British photographer told CNN's Ivan Watson. The photographer did not want to be named for fear of being barred from Bangladesh. The two were not romantically involved with each other, the photographer said.

Human Rights Watch, an international non-governmental organization, called on Bangladesh to investigate the killings of the two activists.

Monday's attack follows several others in Bangladesh since 2013, including the hacking death of a professor at a bus stop Saturday and the killings of several bloggers -- six in the past 12 months alone.

Is there a way to protect Bangladeshi writers?

"They knew ... there was a danger". Tanay Mojumdar, the photographer said, was a "minor celebrity" who had acted in a hit play in Bangladesh and appeared on television. "Tanay got a threat last year because he was photographed in the gay pride parade," the photographer said. "And that photograph was published in places in the Bangladeshi newspapers.

"They knew that basically, there was a danger," the photographer said. "There was a threat because there had been all these bloggers killed and a couple of foreigners killed," the photographer said. "They decided not to tell everyone because it would spread fear. They were encouraging everyone to be open."

Mannan oversaw Roopbaan, a Dhaka-based LGBT magazine that describes itself as "a platform and publication promoting human rights and freedom to love in Bangladesh." The Roopbaan team had been receiving threats from various Islamist pages on Facebook for some time, said Boys of Bangladesh, the country's largest gay rights group. Mannan had been a prominent member of Boys of Bangladesh since 2005 and many of its leading activists have been living in fear, it added.

Attackers posed as couriers

The two were in an apartment when five or six young men posing as couriers arrived under the guise of delivering a package, said Mohammad Iqbal, the officer in charge of the Kalabagan police station. The attackers entered the second-floor apartment and hacked them to death with machetes, Iqbal said. Mannan's mother and a maid were also in the flat at the time, he said. Both are alive.

"The brutal killing today of an editor of an LGBTI publication and his friend, days after a university professor was hacked to death, underscores the appalling lack of protection being afforded to a range of peaceful activists in the country," said Champa Patel, Amnesty International's South Asia director. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called the killing a "barbaric murder."

The killings come a day after Bangladeshi police detained a university student in the hacking death of 58-year-old Rezaul Karim Siddique, an English teacher at Rajshahi University. Rajshahi police Commissioner Mohammad Shamsuddin said the student wasn't charged and it remained unclear why Siddique had been stabbed in the neck as he awaited a bus to take him to campus Saturday.

"He was neither a blogger nor an anti-Islamic campaigner, but the pattern of the murder indicates Islamist militants involved in the recent spate of killings of secular bloggers might have a link," Shamsuddin said.

ISIS claimed responsibility for Siddique's death, saying he was slain "for calling to atheism." CNN could not independently confirm either the terror outfit's claim or Siddique's religious beliefs.

Crime scene for the murder of Bangladeshi-American professor Avijit Roy and wounding of his wife.

Extremists have 84 Bangladeshi Writers On Their 'hit list'

Reports of hacking deaths go back to 2013 in Bangladesh, most of them targeting bloggers. Since last year, Nazimuddin Samad, Faisal Arefin Dipan, Ananta Bijoy Das, Niloy Neel, Washiqur Rahman and Avijit Roy are among the writers who have been killed.

The Nine Murdered Bloggers out of Hit-listed 84 Are:

1. Jafar Munshi: Killed on February 14, 2013.
2. Rajeeb Haider: Killed on February 15, 2013. Was hacked to death by machete-wielding men in the Mirpur area of Dhaka.
3. Arif Hossain Dwip: Killed April 9, 2013.
4. Ziauddin Zakaria Babu: December 11, 2013.
5. Mamun Hossain: Killed on January 12, 2014.
6. Jagatjyoti Talukder: Killed on March 2, 2014.
7. Avijit Roy: Killed on February 26, 2015. Stabbed repeatedly near the Teacher-Student Centre on the Dhaka University campus when he and his wife were on the way home after visiting the Amar Ekushey Book Fair.
8. Washiqur Rahman: Killed on March 30, 2015. Hacked to death by men wielding meat cleavers in Dhaka.
9. Ananta Bijoy Das: Killed on May 12, 2015, in the Subid Bazar area of Sylhet city by machete wielding men.

Related posts at following links:
Muslims Hacked Bangladeshi Secular Professor To Death
Mohammad's Brutal Murder Of Poet Asma Marwan (624)