Bangladesh Police Arrest IT Chief Of Group Blamed For Gay Activists’ Deaths

Xulhaz Mannan

Chief of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s counter-terrorism unit Monirul Islam on Tuesday announced that they had apprehended the alleged head of information technology for the al Qaeda-inspired militant group Ansarullah Bangla Team, which has been blamed for the brutal hacking of secular bloggers and LGBT rights activists, NBC News reports.

Former Secretary of State John Kerry last April called Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Wazed, offering support related to the investigation into the violent attack that killed Xulhaz Mannan, a U.S. Embassy employee, a gay rights activist and the editor of Bangladesh’s first LGBT magazine Roopbaan.

Rahman was arrested in Dhaka on Monday and was studying computer science when he became involved with ABT. Islam claims that while with ABT, Rahman was close to the group’s head of military operations, former army major Syed Mohammad Ziaul Haque. Haque allegedly went underground after the Bangladesh military claimed he had been aiding a plot to overthrow the government in 2011.

PREVIOUSLY: Bangladesh Police Kill Islamist Militant Who Murdered Gay Activists, Liberal Bloggers

The police currently hold ABT responsible for a numbers of attacks, since February 2015, that claimed the lives of five bloggers, a publisher and two gay rights activists —Mannan and Mahbub Tonoy — NBC reports. While al Qaeda and the Islamic State have taken credit for many killings in the country, authorities deny their presence and instead blame home-grown groups for these attacks.

The post Bangladesh Police Arrest IT Chief Of Group Blamed For Gay Activists’ Deaths appeared first on Towleroad.

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