One of the masterminds of Gulshan cafe attack killed in a gunfight in Dhaka, Bangladesh

News Hour:

Nurul Islam alias Marzan, one of the masterminds of last year’s Gulshan cafe attack and leader of Neo-Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), and his accomplice Saddam were killed in a gunfight with police in Beribadh area of Mohammadpur, Dhaka, Bangladesh today.

“Marzan, one of the masterminds of Gulshan Holey Artisan Bakery attack on July 1, last year, and Saddam Hossain, chief of the northern districts of the militant outfit, were killed in gunfight with the members of law enforcement agencies at about 3 am,” Monirul Islam, chief of Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit (CTTCU), told journalists.

Army soldiers take their positions near the Holey Artisan restaurant after Islamist militants attacked the upscale cafe in Dhaka, Bangladesh on July 2, 2016

Marzan was a close aide of Bangladeshi origin Canadian citizen Tamim Chowdhury, the senior police officer said, adding, he was from Afuria village under Hemayetpur union of Pabna Sadar Upazila and a student of Arabic Department of Chittagong University, reports BSS.

Quoting his family sources, police said Marzan married to Arefin Prioty in January last year and subsequently they went missing. Later, detectives arrested his wife along with their kid from Azimpur militant hideout on September 11, last year.

They said during the Gulshan attack, Marjan was staying at Kalyanpur in the capital and maintained communication with the attackers and their masterminds. Twenty hostages were brutally killed during the terrorist attack in Gulshan cafe last year before the Army-led commandoes stormed the cafe early next morning.

Of the civilian victims, nine were Italian citizens, seven Japanese, one Indian, two Bangladeshis and one Bangladeshi born US citizen.

Besides, two senior police officers — Banani Police Station officer-in-charge Salauddin Ahmed Khan and Detective Branch assistant commissioner Robiul Islam — were killed when they tried to rescue the hostages.

However, six terrorists were killed and one was held in the army-led rescue operation. Thirteen hostages including women and children were also rescued during the operation.

So far, police have hunted down and killed at least 40 militants linked to the cafe attack, including mastermind Tamim Chowdhury.

The CTTCU chief said Saddam was hailed from Gaibandha and wanted for at least ten murder cases, including Japanese national Kunio Hoshi murder, Jogeshwar Das Adhikari murder and attempt to murder a Bahai community leader in Rangpur.

He said the bodies of the top two militants were sent to Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) for autopsy. Meanwhile, police recovered one pistol, one knife, one motorbike and explosives from them.

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