Al-Qaeda affiliate claims killing of secular Bangladeshi publisher


Dhaka (dpa) – A Bangladeshi extremist group linked to al-Qaeda said Sunday it was responsible for the recent killing of a secular publisher.

“We, al-Qaeda in the Indian Sub-Continent (AQIS), claim responsibility for this operation as vengeance for the honour of the messenger of Allah and the religion of Islam,” read a statement sent from AQIS affiliate Ansar-al-Islam to media outlets.

Faysal Arfin Deepon, chief of publication house Jagriti, was stabbed to death in his Dhaka office Saturday afternoon. Fellow publisher Ahmedur Rashid Tutul and two writers were injured in the attack.

Deepon and Tutul had published books by Bangladesh-born US writer and secular blogger Avijit Roy, who was hacked to death by suspected Islamists on February 26 at a university book fair in Dhaka.

“These two publishers were worse than the writers of such books, as they helped to propagate those books and paid the blasphemers handsome amount of money for writing them,” the statement said.

The group earlier claimed responsibility for the killings four other secular bloggers in Bangladesh this year, calling the victims enemies of Islam and Allah.