Bangladesh is ’safe haven for British Islamic terrorists’: Security experts

May 24th, 2009 - 12:00 pm ICT by ANI  

London, May 24 (ANI): Security experts have warned that extremists training in Bangladesh could pose a major threat to Britain, adding that the south-Asian country has become a “safe haven” for terrorists.According to a report in The Independent, a rising number of British-born fundamentalists are travelling to Bangladesh for jihadist training, prompting authorities in Dhaka to launch a database to monitor the movements of suspected terrorists.

UK security services are also turning their attention to the country, fearing it may become a magnet for would-be terrorists as security forces ratchet up surveillance on Pakistan.

More than 4,000 British Muslims are thought to have travelled to Pakistan and Afghanistan for military training.

Senior Bangladeshi intelligence sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the paper that they were keen to crack down on growing fundamentalist activity. But they admitted that lack of technology limits the means they have to monitor suspected extremists.

One source said the country is attempting to create a system to monitor potential terrorists arriving by air, and to secure its borders.

He revealed that the Chittagong Hill Tracts in the south, and the land along the Indian border in east Bangladesh, including around the town of Sylhet - the home of many Bangladeshi British expats - were being investigated as possible bases for jihadist training camps.

UK security sources confirmed they stepped up surveillance of Bangladesh after seeing spikes in travel to the country.

Bangladesh is setting up anti-terror joint working groups with countries including Britain and the US. This follows the visit to Bangladesh by the Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith, in April last year, to discuss ways the two countries could work together. (ANI)

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