DHAKA, Mar 13, 2017 (BSS) - Inspector General of Police AKM Shahidul Hoque today ruled out the presence of Islamic State (IS) in Bangladesh, clarifying that there was no evidence of the militant outfit's involvement in the Gulshan attack.
"There has not been any existence of the IS in the country and no arrested criminals in their confessional statements indicated any involvement of them with the IS," he told newsmen on the sideline of an international conference being held at a local hotel.
The three-day Chiefs of Police Conference of South Asia and Neighboring Countries on Regional Cooperation in Curbing Violent Extremism and Transnational Crime started here yesterday under the auspices of Bangladesh Police and the Interpol.
The IGP also made it clear to the newsmen that the Bangladesh law
enforcement agencies have not found any evidence of the connection of the home-grown terrorists with the IS in Bangladesh. Professor Rohan Gunaratna, a security expert and researcher of Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, in his speech yesterday claimed the presence of IS in Bangladesh and said the outfit carried out the Gulshan restaurant caf, attack.
A K M Shahidul Hoque rejected outright the claim of Rohan and said,
"Professor Rohan is not a police officer or involved in security activities.
He is an academician and does not have any idea about the Bangladesh
perspective." Hoque said Rohan's statement must have similarity with the reality but we do not see any such consistency with what he said. "It was his personal statement and we do not endorse it," the IGP said. The Bangladesh police chief also said that many criminals were arrested in connection with the Gulshan caf, attack and they are already under custody.
"Not a single one of them has ever confessed that they have any link with the IS. Even the family members of the slain militants did not say that their sons were IS members," he said. Director General of Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) Major General AKM Abdur Rahman, Inspector General of Police, Bangladesh, AKM Shahidul Hoque, Inspector General of Police, Sri Lanka, Pujith Jayasundra, Director General of Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), Bangladesh, Benzir Ahmed, Director of the National Security Intelligence Commodore MN Absar, Deputy Governor of Bangladesh Bank Abu Hena Mohd. Razee Hassan, AIG of Bangladesh Police Md. Moniruzzaman and Deputy Head of Interpol NCB China Yu Chengtao delivered their speeches on the second day of the conference.
A total of 58 foreign representatives, including Interpol Secretary General J?rgen Stock and police chiefs from Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Malaysia are attending the three-day conference to conclude tomorrow.
Officials from Interpol, Facebook, US IGCI, FBI, ASEANpol and ICITAP and other international organizations are also participating in the conference. A total of 14 working sessions on various topics are being held at the three-day conference. The topics include terrorism, human trafficking, financial crime, terrorism financing, drug trafficking, arms trafficking, intelligence and cybercrime issues.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)