A ship fires missile during an annual exercise of Bangladesh Navy in the Bay of Bengal yesterday. Photo: Anurup Kanti Das
Security of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been beefed up following the threat issued through an audiovisual message purportedly by al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri on Saturday.
PM's security adviser Maj Gen (retd) Tarique Ahmed Siddique told this to journalists yesterday at Bangladesh Navy warship BNS Bangabandhu in the Bay of Bengal after the completion of the Navy's 16-day Exercise Sea Thunder 2014.
Warships returning to the shore as the 16-day Exercise Sea Thunder 2014 concludes. Photo: Anurup Kanti Das
The government, said the adviser, has already traced the location from where the threat was made, but it would not disclose the location for strategic reasons.
In the message, the al-Qaeda chief urged the Muslims in Bangladesh to wage an Intifada (popular uprising) to confront the “crusader onslaught against Islam”.
On the last day of its annual exercise, the navy yesterday fired missiles, rocket depth charge and mortars. Some 70 warships along with several hundred naval officers and personnel took part in the exercise that began on February 2.
The surface-to-surface missiles were launched from the frigate BNS Uttal and Durbar, while the surface-to-air missiles were fired from the frigate BNS Bangabandhu.
Most of the naval ships, including frigates, offshore patrol vessels, minesweepers, patrol boats, gun boats, torpedo boats and newly inducted maritime patrol aircraft, participated in the exercise.
Senior officers of the three armed services witnessed the exercise.
Naval chief Vice Admiral Farid Habib said they firmly believe that the navy will become a three-dimensional force within five to ten years.
“The navy is now making drones, which will be used to trace any illegal ships within our sea territory in future to gain absolute control over our maritime boundary,” he mentioned.