Millennium Post

Dhaka cafe attack: B'desh court sentences 7 Islamists to death

Dhaka: An anti-terrorism Bangladeshi tribunal on Wednesday sentenced seven Islamist extremists to death over the gruesome 2016 Dhaka cafe attack that killed 20 people, including an Indian girl, according to a media report.

In a packed courtroom, judge Mojibur Rahman of the special tribunal delivered the verdict, which is likely to be appealed, for the blitz on Holey Artisan Bakery in the Gulshan diplomatic zone which sent shockwaves around the world, the reported.

The convicts -- Jahangir Hossain alias Rajib Gandhi, Rakibul Hasan Regan, Aslam Hossain alias Rashedul Islam alias Rash, Abdus Sabur Khan alias Soheil Mahfuz, Hadisur Rahman Sagar, Shariful Islam Khaled alias Khalid and Mamunur Rashid Ripon were in the court to hear their death penalty, the report said.

A terrorist group belonging to the banned Neo-Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (Neo-JMB) stormed the Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka's up market Gulshan area and killed 20 people, mostly foreigners, in the brutal late-night attack on July 1 after the attackers took diners and restaurant staff hostage.

The Indian girl, Tarishi Jain, a student of the University of California in Berkeley, was among those killed in the attack . She was in Dhaka on vacation.

The Islamic State (IS) claimed to have staged the attack although Bangladesh has declined the presence of any foreign terrorist group in the country and attributed the assault to home-grown terrorists."Charges against them were proved beyond any doubt. The court gave them the highest punishment," public prosecutor Golam Sarwar Khan told reporters after the verdict, amid tight security at the court in the capital, Dhaka.

One of the eight accused was acquitted, he added.

A defence lawyer said the convicted men would appeal the charges, which include training the attackers and supplying arms, explosives and funds.

After the ruling, they shouted "Allahu Akbar" (God is Greatest) and "We did nothing wrong" from the dock to a packed courtroom, witnesses said.Two were seen wearing prayer caps bearing the insignia of Islamic State; authorities opened an investigation into how the caps reached them while they were in police custody.

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