Bangladesh army says foils coup attempt
Dhaka, January 19, 2012
The Bangladesh army has foiled a coup planned against the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, a military spokesman said on Thursday.
Bangladesh has a history of coups with army generals running the impoverished South Asian nation for 15 years until the end of 1990.
"Specific information has been unearthed that some officers in military service have been involved in the conspiracy to topple the system of democratic governance," Brigadier General Muhammad Masud Razzaq told reporters.
He said the officers had been identified. Some had been detained and would be presented before a military court.
Intelligence officials had repeatedly warned that "fanatic" Islamist militants with links to the military may try to oust Hasina.
"A band of fanatic officers had been trying to oust the politically established government. Their attempt has been foiled," Razzaq said.
Hasina took power in early 2009 and has since faced threats from Islamist and other radical groups. A revolt in the country's paramilitary forces in February 2009 started in Dhaka and spread to a dozen other cities, killing more than 70 people, including 51 army officers.
The revolt was quelled after two days but the country has since been shadowed by fears of further uprisings. – Reuters