Washington/Dhaka, June 18 (ANI): Several newspaper reports across South Asia have claimed that Bangladesh is emerging as the haven of choice for South Asian terror operatives, and that there stay is being facilitated by both Bangladeshi and Pakistani intelligence services.
According to the Christian Science Monitor (CSM), in recent days, Bangladeshi police have uncovered a plot that used Bangladesh to transit thousands of weapons to an Indian separatist group, and followed up by arresting key members of that group in Dhaka.
The Daily Star reports the police as arresting a fugitive hit man working for Dawood Ibrahim, one of South Asia's most notorious terrorists.
According to the paper, while in custody, the assassin divulged that 150 of Ibrahim's operatives are stationed in Bangladesh.brahim's network is said to span Al-Qaeda, Bollywood, and the organized crime world of Dubai.
The news has had an unsettling effect on the Bangladesh Government. Local Government Minister Syed Asharful Islam said Bangladesh would face the fate of Pakistan if the country was not prepared to tackle the growing spate of terrorism.
Talking to reporters in Dhaka, he said Bangladesh needed to work seriously to tackle the issue since terrorism is a global phenomenon.
U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh James F Moriarty's comment of Bangladesh still facing the threat of militancy, is also being seen in certain quarters with concern.
He said Washington got "disturbing indications" of terrorist threat in Bangladesh."
The Chittagong arms case is particularly disturbing because of the alleged role of Bangladesh's intelligence service. The Daily Star reports that two former intelligence chiefs have admitted to collusion in the deal, which consisted of more than 20,000 grenades. The arms were intended for the Indian separatist group United Liberation Front of Assam, or ULFA.
The revelations are shocking because they have confirmed allegations that India has leveled at Bangladesh for years, says Diganta Sarkar, a blogger originally from West Bengal in India, on his blog The New Horizon.
India has accused Bangladesh of allowing its territory to be used for anti-Indian activities, especially with ULFA.
Bangladesh has denied all this. (ANI)