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Dhaka police arrest four JMB militants in raid

 Dhaka, Feb 1: Bangladesh Police on Wednesday claimed to have arrested four alleged militants of a faction of banned militant outfit Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) in a raid, media reports said on Wednesday. The Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) told bdnews24.com that the four operatives of JMB Sarwar-Tamim faction were arrested from a five-storey building in the capital’s Jatrabarhi area around 3 a.m. on Tuesday.

The arrested were identified as Ashfaque-e-Azam alias Apple, Mahbubur Rahman, Shahinuzzaman and Ashraful Islam. Ashfaque-e-Azam was the group’s IT expert. He was in charge of maintaining websites and providing technical support, said the RAB.

Firearms, ammunitions and explosives were also seized in the house, including two pistols, 21 rounds of ammunition, four sharp weapons, gun powder and bomb-making materials.

“Amid law-enforcers’ crackdown, the militants were scattered. We received inputs that they were regrouping,” RAB told bdnews24.com. The four had rented the apartment on January 23 saying they were construction workers.

“The landlord is a woman. When she asked for IDs and pictures, they told her she would get them on February 1,” said RAB-10 chief Jahangir Hossain Matubbar.

The RAB officer said Ashfaque, an IT graduate from a private university, got involved with militancy five years ago while Shahinuzzaman is an expert in handling firearms.

“We suspect they were planning for an attack. Further details can be known once they are interrogated,” said Hossain.

Earlier in January, police bbed a 35-year-old Neo-JMB terrorist Jahangir Alam alias Rajib Gandhi, one of the key figures behind the terror attack on the Gulshan cafe in July last year in which over 20 people, mostly foreigners were killed. Rajib had close connections with Tamim, the mastermind of the cafe siege, who was killed last year. (IANS)

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Ankur Kalita