News

    Second Mass Grave Found in Bangladesh

    A second mass grave has been unearthed at the headquarters of the mutinous paramilitary border guards in the Bangladeshi capital. More than 75 bodies have been found, mostly senior military personnel, but dozens more officers have not been accounted for. Meanwhile, the head of the Bangladesh army is pledging support for the two-month-old civilian government amid fears soldiers will launch reprisal strikes for the slaying of so many of their colleagues and members of their families.

    Amid a three-day period of national mourning, which began Friday, Bangladesh is still coming to grips with the extent of this week's massacre at the Dhaka headquarters of the paramilitary border guards.

    Uniformed bodies of army officers, shot and bayoneted, continue to be found in mass graves at the compound of the force they commanded, the Bangladesh Rifles, known as the BDR.

    Seeking to allay fears that a grieving and angry army could seek revenge against the mutinous paramilitaries, the army chief, General Moeen Ahmed, met with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He is said to have pledged the military's loyalty to the civilian government and urged the nation to stay calm.

    The prime minister is calling the uprising a well-planned conspiracy.

    She says, at this point, all BDR members are presumed guilty and the government will find out who is responsible for the killings.

    In an effort to end the two-day mutiny, the prime minister initially promised amnesty for the rebels. But the army's second-in-command, Lieutenant General Mohammad Abdul Mubin, says that is not going to happen.

    The general declares the troops who took part in what he calls "barbaric and grisly acts" cannot be pardoned and will not be pardoned.

    For a second day along the 4,000 kilometer long border with India, the BDR guards were not observed at their posts. Analysts and Indian media say it is unclear whether they are inside the barracks or have fled.

    Several hundred soldiers of the Bangladesh Rifles, who either escaped from the scene of the carnage in Dhaka or abandoned their posts across the country, have been detained.

    Rebels of the paramilitary force claimed they took action during the uprising to protest their poor pay and mistreatment by their commanders, who come from the army.

    Bangladesh, since winning independence in a 1971 war with Pakistan, has suffered numerous military takeovers and coup attempts.

    The prime minister's father, Sheikh Mujibuy Rahman, who was the country's first head of state, was killed in a 1975 military coup.

    Ms. Hasina, previously prime minister for five years until 2001, regained power in democratic elections two months ago, ending a period of emergency rule by a military-backed government.


    Steve Herman

    A veteran journalist, Steve Herman is VOA's Southeast Asia Bureau Chief and Correspondent, based in Bangkok.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora