‘QAEDA MESSAGE MATCHES KHALEDA’S’
Al-Qaeda’s remarks in its audio-message about Hifazat-e Islam and Bangladesh are “identical” to those by BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon has said.
The BNP chief is “involved” with international terror groups, the minister from the Workers Party told reporters at Chittagong’s Circuit House on Sunday.
An audio tape said to be carrying a message from Al-Qaeda chief Ayman Al-Zawahiri was circulating on the Internet, calling on Muslims in Bangladesh to start an uprising.
“Al-Qaeda’s comments on Hifazat-e Islam completely match with what Khaleda Zia has been saying about them,” he said, adding that the contents of the audio message also went on to prove that Hifazat had ties with militants.
Hifazat-e Islam was quick to deny any connection to the audio after its release in the media on Saturday and questioned the authenticity of the message.
State Minister for Home Affairs Asaduzzaman Kamal Khan on Sunday said the government was tracing the audio to determine its origin.
Menon said, “The people of Bangladesh have never given in to terror but the attempt to turn the country into a safe haven for militants is still on.”
He said the audio would serve as “evidence” to people of “the conspiracies being hatched by the Jamaat-e-Islami and Hifazat”.
He mentioned bombings and other terror strikes in Bangladesh during the term of the BNP-Jamaat government and said, “We told them clearly that international terror groups were involved.”
“But then Prime Minister Khaleda Zia and her Foreign Minister Morshed repeatedly claimed they were just locals with no international ties,” said the minister.
Menon said Zawahiri’s comments about Bangladesh secession from Pakistan as “a mere facade to hurt the Muslim Ummah” were in tune with Pakistan’s justification for the genocide they carried out in Bangladesh in 1971.
“They still can’t accept the fact that we hold our Liberation War so dear.”
The minister visited the Shah Amanat Airport and the under-construction Motel Saikat on the Station Road at the port city.
FEBRUARY 16, 2014