- Anthony Weiner on his current sexting habits: ‘None of your business’
- Producers eye Capitol Hill for latest reality TV hit
- No selfie awareness: Obama, Biden mug for Instagram as Ukraine implodes
- Putin to Snowden: We don’t collect droves of data on everyone like the U.S.
- Clemson football’s new opponent: Atheists upset with player prayer, Bible study
- Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s re-election launch party will be ‘history in the making,’ brother says
- Louisiana group hits back at Sen. Mary Landrieu campaign ad with ‘Actress Mary’ spot
- Brain surgery victim struggles with Obamacare: ‘It’s scary’
- Pro-Russian forces storm Ukrainian national guard base; 3 killed
- Joe Biden’s first Instagram pic mocked as shill for sunglass ad
Terror suspect captured in Bangladesh
Bangladeshi law enforcement authorities arrested the leader of a terrorist organization this week, notching up another victory in their fight against violent Islamist extremism.
Saidur Rahman, leader of the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), was arrested in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka on Sunday.
JMB is linked to Pakistan-based terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which U.S. and Indian intelligence agencies say was behind the November 2008 attacks in Mumbai in which 166 people, including six Americans, were killed.
The U.S. has been sharing information with and training Bangladeshi authorities as they clamp down on extremist groups.
Robert O. Blake, Jr., assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asian affairs, congratulated the Bangladeshi government on Rahman's arrest.
The arrest is the "latest in a series of high-profile success stories in which local Bangladeshi law enforcement officers have arrested terrorist leaders who threaten the countrys democratic institutions and secular traditions," Mr. Blake said in a statement Thursday.
In a report for the Congressional Research Service, Bruce Vaughn, a specialist in Asian affairs, noted that Bangladesh has been largely successful in destabilizing Islamist militants since the widespread bombings that were carried out by JMB in 2005.
"Hundreds of JMB members, including key leaders, were arrested, and the leadership, including JMB founder Shaikh Abdur Rahman, were executed in the aftermath of the 2005 bombings," Mr. Vaughn said.
Sheikh Mohammed Belal, deputy chief of mission at the Bangladeshi Embassy in Washington, said law enforcement officials were in the process of extracting information from Rahman that could lead to further arrests.
He said "rightist political parties" in Bangladesh had tried to paint the government's campaign against extremist groups as an "anti-religious drive."
JMB has sought to establish Islamist rule in Bangladesh.
Mr. Vaughn noted that arrests and seizures of bomb-making materials in recent years suggest that JMB had been able to regroup despite the crackdown since 2005.
Mr. Blake said JMB has been responsible for "numerous acts of indiscriminate violence against Bangladeshi civilians, including a coordinated series of bombings in August 2005 that affected 63 of the country's 64 districts, as well as attacks on judges, police and ordinary citizens."
Mr. Belal attributed the marginalization of JMB to the fact that Muslim clerics in Bangladesh had spoken out extremist groups.
He described the U.S. as "one of our most important allies" in the war against these extremists.
Mr. Blake, meanwhile, pledged continuing U.S. support to Bangladesh "to deny space to terrorists and to promote regional peace and security."
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ashish Kumar Sen is a reporter covering foreign policy and international developments for The Washington Times.
Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Sen worked for publications in Asia and the Middle East. His work has appeared in a number of publications and online news sites including the British Broadcasting Corp., Asia Times Online and Outlook magazine.
- Amid clashes, White House nixes 'lethal' Ukraine aid
- U.S. rebukes Iran's U.N. envoy pick over 1979 embassy attack
- U.S. missing out on big opportunities in Africa, Liberian official says
- House follows Senate in passing bill to bar Iran's U.N. pick
- Obama admin unfairly pitting China against North Korea: diplomat
TWT Video Picks
By John R. Bolton
Reality calls for attaching Gaza to Egypt and the West Bank to Jordan
- 'Culture of intimidation' seen in Nevada ranch standoff
- Removal of military gear limits options for U.S., NATO in Ukraine
- IRS emails reveal discussion with Justice about suing nonprofits for election activities
- Rand and Ron Paul ride to the rescue for Bundy in Nevada standoff with feds
- NAPOLITANO: Hope for the dead and freedom for the living
- CURL: The state of the Union worse than you thought
- PETA officials collide with deer
- CNN op-ed claims right-wingers 'more deadly than jihadists'
- BOLTON: A 'three-state solution' for Middle East peace
- U.S. Navy to turn seawater into jet fuel
Celebrity deaths in 2014