Schools and offices were shut down in Bangladesh Dec. 1 in a strike called by lawyers after suicide bomb attacks at court buildings killed nine people. Lawyers and police said the attackers are singling out the judiciary to sow fear before it puts militants detained for other bombings on trial. Police have arrested 22 people for the bombings in the southern port city of Chittagong and Gazipur, a town outside the capital.
The attacks were the latest in a wave of attacks by Islamist militants since Aug. 17 when they exploded some 500 small bombs across the country. Two people were killed and nearly 100 wounded. The militants are said to belong to two outlawed Muslim groups, Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen and Jagrata Muslim Janata Bangladesh. These attacks are the first suicide bombings in Bangladesh.
“The government has failed to ensure security for the people,” the main opposition Awami League, which is supporting the strike by the lawyers, said in a statement. (Reuters, Dec. 1)
On Dec. 1, a third blast injured 30 at a complex that houses government offices and a courthouse in Gazipur. (AP, Dec. 1)
See our last post on Bangladesh.