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Police foil lone wolf militant suicide blast plans

Militants use ‘Text Now’ app for generating fake phone numbers

Published : 21 Aug 2019 08:58 PM | Updated : 02 Sep 2020 09:11 PM

Law enforcers have successfully foiled suicide bomb attack plans, targeted to kill police personnel, by lone wolf militant in the mourning month of August. Officers of the Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC), a specialised unit of Dhaka Metropolitan Police ( DMP), exclusively told Bangladesh Post on Wednesday.

According to court sources, Mortuza Kabir alias Ababil, arrested along with four other members of the lone wolf group, was chief coordinator of the planned terrorist attacks targeting several police personnel. A lone wolf is someone who prepares and carries out terrorist attack alone, outside of any command structure and without material assistance from any group.

Earlier on August 8, a team of CTTC led by Senior Assistant Commissioner Sk Imran Hossain, arrested five terrorists of the lone wolf group of Neo-JMB, an offshoot of the banned militant outfit Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh, from the city’s Bashundhara Residential Area.They were identified as Mohammad Shibli Azad alias Sadi, Shah M Asadullah Mortuza Kabir alias Ababil, Mashrik Ahmed, Md Ashraful Al Amin alias Tareq and SM Tasnim Rifat.

Shibli and Ababil are BBA students at North South University in Dhaka. Mashrik completed his BBA from Jashore's MM College while Tareq and Rifat had cleared the SSC exams.Police confiscated 10 detonators, four gas bottles and five mobile phones from the arrestees.Sources in the Dhaka Court told this correspondent that court granted the five arrested militants a total of nine days remand in two phases.

After the interrogation in the custody of CTTC, they confessed before the judicial magistrates of the Dhaka Court. They also described how they were radicalized and how they planned to carry out suicide attacks on the police.Court sources said, on August 18, three leaders of the lone wolf group Ababil, Mashrik and Shibli gave their confessional statements. Later, on August 20, Tareq and Rifat, two other members of the militant group, also confessed before the judicial magistrates in the Dhaka Court.

They all were radicalized after watching Jihadist video clips and other extremist materials. Ababil provided them all these radicalizing materials through secret messenger group Telegram, widely used apps by the terrorists.Getting in touch with Ababil and Mashrik, HSC student Rifat was also radicalized very quickly. He became crazy in collecting and watching new Jihadist materials. He at one stage gave up his academic career. As a result, he failed in two subjects in the HSC examination in 2019.

At one stage of radicalization, he started offering prayers in different ways. His parents had asked him why he had changed his prayer style. In response, he told them that he found a Hadith in favour of his new prayer style.Shibli in his confession before the magistrate said that after complete radicalization, he informed Ababil and Mashrik that he is ready to sacrifice his life for Islam.

Mashrik collected arms and ammunition for the members of the lone wolf group from different parts of the country to carry out suicide attacks on uniformed police.According to the CTTC officers, lone wolf militants of the Neo JMB planned to commit suicide attack on police for creating serious panic among law enforcers in the mourning month of August .

They treat police personnel as the main force of the current government, which is termed ‘Tagut’ by the Islamist terrorists.For this Tagut force, they claim they cannot work freely.Responding to a question, a CTTC officer said, though they planned to use Improvised Explosive Devices ( IED), lone wolf members also decided to collect firearms for their safety.

Tagut (forces of Shaitan) is Islamic terminology denoting a focus of worship other than Allah. In traditional theology, the term often connotes idols or demons.Islamist terrorists believe that those who are unbelievers fight in the cause of Tagut.Lone wolf militants were using VPN for safe browsing. They used American phone numbers to register in Telegram apps. However, these numbers were not any original numbers. These numbers were actually generated by a new mobile apps name ‘Text Now’.