LGBT Activist and USAID Employee Hacked to Death in Bangladesh

Bangladesh has been riven by a wave of deadly attacks on foreigners, religious minorities and secular bloggers.

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Eight to ten armed terrorists attacked a bakery in the diplomatic zone of Dhaka, Bangladesh on Friday night. The wave of violence in the country over the past months has killed rationalists, bloggers, activists, and members of religious minorities.

A gay rights activist and his friend were stabbed to death by unknown assailants on Monday night in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Thirty Five year old Xulhaz Mannan was the editor of Bangladesh’s only LGBT rights magazine and also was an employee at United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Police suspect radical Islamists to be the perpetrators of the attack. Ansar-al Islam, the Bangladeshi branch of al-Qaeda, in a Twitter message on Tuesday owned up to the killings. It said the two men were killed because they were “pioneers of practicing and promoting homosexuality in Bangladesh” and were “working day and night to promote homosexuality.”

Police reportedly recovered a pistol, five rounds of ammunition and some clothes linked to the killers.

Mannan was an editor of Bangladesh’s first gay rights magazine, Roopbaan, as well as a cousin of former Foreign Minister Dipu Moni of the governing Awami League party.

Bangladesh has been riven by a wave of deadly attacks on foreigners, religious minorities and secular bloggers, raising fears that religious extremists are gaining foothold in the country, despite its traditions of secularism and tolerance.

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