Journal from July – Wrath of the night

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Photo: Saad Hammadi

A man who escaped with his life from the restaurant was himself a kitchen staff. He was working when he heard gunshots. He ran off from the kitchen and was hiding on the second floor of the restaurant before he managed to escape. Inside, there were 50 to 60 restaurant staffs and another 25 to 30 customers dining, he said. That’s a lot of people held hostage but there was no way to verify except sources like him who were direct witnesses.

 

I walk a little further and find an anxious guardian who has a nephew-in-law among the hostages. The nephew went there with his girlfriend. His girlfriend had communicated with her father saying they were safe inside the restaurant but advised him not to call them. Since then they have been incommunicado.

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Journal from July – Into the dark

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Photo: Saad Hammadi

At the hospital gate I hear one person saying his brother, a ranking police official was injured in the attack. I took down his information. He would not be let inside until another police official heard his pleading and ordered the gatekeepers to allow him inside.

 

I spent a few minutes recceing the place. The place was empty except a few pressmen and cops in the area. I have to dodge the crowd to make my way in. With the waiting journalists at the front gate, it would not be possible to exploit an entry from there.

 

If there were any possibility it would have to be an entry from the OPD. The OPD gate was wide open. A couple of security guards were there who did not bother stopping me because they knew it was only the first layer of security. At the glass door leading inside the hospital building, there were more guards. Expectedly, one of the guards at the glass door resisted.

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Breeding ground of terror

In the complex web of militancy, Bangladesh is a victim of international terrorism as foreign terrorist organisations patronise local outfits, to thrive in their transnational operations. Saad Hammadi investigates how Pakistan based militant outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba instigated terrorist attacks in Bangladesh, in the past, conniving with Harkat ul Jihad al Islami-Bangladesh

The mujahideens (jihadists) of the subcontinent share a strong link between each other, especially since many of them participated alongside each other in the Afghan war of the late 1970s. Many Pakistanis, Indians and Bangladeshis joined the mujahideen resistance of the pro-Soviet Democratic Republic of Afghanistan. In 1989, although the Soviet Union pulled itself out of the conflict, a civil war continued between the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan and the mujahideens. Three years down the line, the latter defeated the DRA and established the Islamic State of Afghanistan. A lot of the mujahideens returned to their respective home countries with victorious memory of their fight in Afghanistan.

Two decades later, their relationship is still visible on an even larger scale, with deadly missions being carried out in different parts of the world.

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The enigma of Myanmar

As Myanmar prepares for its first general elections in 20 years, barring many leading political leaders and representatives from participating, Saad Hammadi highlights the concerns for Bangladesh and delves into the history of the troubled nation


BUDDHIKA WEERASINGHE/DrikNEWS

With the national elections of Myanmar scheduled to be held in two days, international quarters and concerned countries such as Bangladesh,

look forward to the impact the elections will have on the political landscape of the country, as well as its relationship with the rest of the world.

Neighbours Myanmar and Bangladesh naturally have many issues in common, and as diplomats and experts on international relations believe, it is at the interest of the two countries that they maintain a friendly relationship. From the issue of maritime boundary, the construction of bridges and highways, facilitating export and import, to the longstanding issue of Rohingyas, the two countries have some major bilateral issues. Myanmar, being the only other nation to share a direct boundary with Bangladesh, draws all the more attention to its state of affairs. The two countries share a 180-km common border.

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