About 63 percent of the female terror suspects in the country are linked to “Neo JMB”, according to findings of the counter terrorism unit.
A Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit official came up with the findings, analysing profiles of 85 female militant suspects arrested in the last couple of years.
Their involvement increased after “Neo JMB” emerged in 2014. The militant outfit is responsible for the July 1, 2016 Holey Artisan attack.
According to CTTC, 23 percent of female terror suspects are from Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh, and five percent are from Hizb ut-Tahrir, said Mahfuza Liza, a CTTC additional deputy commissioner, while presenting her keynote paper at a conference yesterday.
Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS) organised the event on “New Trends in Terrorism: Regional Cooperation to Meet the Challenges” at a city hotel.
Though the role of females largely remains limited to assisting male terrorists, recruitment and terror financing, some females were found to be equipped with suicide vests during anti-militant drives, said the CTTC official.
According to CTTC findings, over 66 percent of female terror suspects in the country got involved in militancy being influenced by their family members, mostly their husbands.
Influence of family members, a sense of belonging and empowerment, ideological commitment, hope of reward in the afterlife, frustration and fear of uncertainty, and revenge for loss of family members are the major causes of females joining militant groups, CTTC officials found.
The Daily Star Associate Editor Brig Gen (retd) Shahedul Anam Khan said terrorism arose in the country because of external influence, and at times lack of good governance is also responsible.
Canadian High Commissioner Benoit Préfontaine stressed on raising awareness among people and coordination among law enforcement and security agencies.
Chiran Jung Thapa, a Nepalese security analyst; Silvia Tieri, research analyst of Institute of South Asian Studies at National University of Singapore; and Shafqat Munir, a research fellow at BIPSS, presented separate keynote papers.
BIPSS President Maj Gen (retd) ANM Muniruzzaman and Ayesha Kabir, consulting editor (English section) of Prothom Alo, spoke on the occasion, among others.