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2 New JMB men held for 2019 police attacks

  • Published at 01:20 pm January 20th, 2020
Counter Terrorism & Transnational Crime presents two members of banned militant outfit New Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh before media, arrested from Dhaka's Shonir Akhra area on Monday, January 20, 2020 Dhaka Tribune

Police claim one of them is the mastermind of attacks on the law enforcement agency

Counter Terrorism & Transnational Crime (CTTC) officials arrested two members of banned militant outfit New Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (New JMB)  for a series of attacks on police in 2019.

Five improvised explosive devices (IED) were hurled at police in Dhaka's Gulistan, Malibagh, Science Lab, Paltan, and Khamarbari, between April 29 and August 31 last year.

The two most recently arrested are Jamal Uddin Rafique, 26, who police suspect was the mastermind of the attacks, and Md Anwar Hossain, 25.

They were arrested on Sunday from Dhaka's Shonir Akhra, said CTTC chief Monirul Islam at a press conference on Monday.

CTTC Chief Monirul Islam addresses the media on Monday, January 20, 2020 | Dhaka TribuneOn September 23, four other New JMB members were arrested  from Narayanganj in connection with the attacks.  They were arrested from a bomb manufacturing operation run by Rafique. Based on the information provided by the four, two more were recently arrested, said CTTC.

The four arrested earlier were Md Mehedi Hasan Tanim, Farid Uddin Rumi, Abdullah Azmir and Mishuk Khan. All of them confessed to their involvement in the attacks on police and named Rafique as the leader of the gang, police said.

When asked why the police was targeted, Monirul Islam said: “Attacks on police are symbolic. They did this to spread panic and gain publicity.

"They wanted to convey the message that if police are being attacked, how can they protect others."

Police said Rafique is a graduate from Khulna University of Engineering and Technology (Kuet), while Anwar is a driver by profession.

“Rafique, when a student, was with Ansar al-Islam [the banned militant outfit]. Then he joined New JBM as he was not satisfied with the work of Ansar al-Islam. He later motivated his brother [Farid Uddin Rumi] to join him in this path,” said Monirul Islam, about how the two brothers got involved in militancy.

The CTTC chief said Rafique made the IEDs on his own as he had an engineering background.

“Analyzing the explosives, it was found that they [the militants] were going through a trial and error process. The explosives they made previously were stronger than the latter ones,” he added.

Monirul said the recent  trend in militants worldwide shows that people irrespective of age, class, and profession are getting involved in militancy.