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Ashkona raid minute by minute

  • Published at 08:31 am December 24th, 2016
  • Last updated at 12:57 am December 25th, 2016
Ashkona raid minute by minute
12am: CTTC teams arrive in Ashkona following a tip-off that wanted militant Musa was staying in the house. 2am: The den on the ground floor of a three-storey building is identified by the CTTC. A team of Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) arrives at the spot. CTTC personnel call on suspected militants to surrender, but they refuse to come out. They learn that the militants have stockpiled a large cache of explosives in the flat. 6am: The mother and a brother of wanted female militant Jebunnahar Islam arrive at the scene. They use a police megaphone to ask her repeatedly to surrender. 8:45am: DMP Commissioner Asaduzzaman Mia reaches the spot in Ashkona area. Other residents of the building have been evacuated. 9:10am: The DMP commissioner declines to comment on the ongoing raid. 9:25am: Two women surrender with two children, DMP Deputy Commissioner Masudur Rahman tells the Dhaka Tribune. They are taken away on a microbus. 9:45am: CTTC sources say the detainees include wanted militant leader Jebunnahar Islam, wife of Maj (retd) Murad alias Zahidul Islam, who was killed during a raid in Rupnagar, Mirpur on September 8, and their child. The others are wife of top fugitive militant Musa Trishna alias Trisha and their five-year-old child. [caption id="attachment_41716" align="aligncenter" width="800"] Four-year old Sabina, who was injured in the grenade explosion Aminul Islam Babu/Dhaka Tribune[/caption]   9:50am: Fire Service and Civil Defence Deputy Assistant Director Md Salauddin says two units are on the spot since receiving information around 5:10am. Five more units are on standby. 10:10am: A pistol and a knife have been recovered, says a CTTC source. 10:25am: DMP commissioner briefs reporters on the raid: “The CTTC members have laid siege to the building at 2am acting on tip off, and urged the militants to surrender. “Four surrendered with a pistol, six rounds bullets and some explosives. They have been taken to the DB office for interrogation. “Three more militants, including a son of Tanvir Qadri, are still hiding in the house and we have information that they have huge cache of arms and explosives. “They have ignored police’s calls to surrender. The CTTC team will wait until they surrender.” He reiterates that the government’s policy is to show zero-tolerance towards terrorism and militancy.   [caption id="attachment_41704" align="aligncenter" width="690"] CID Crime Scene unit reaches the spot Rajib Dhar/Dhaka Tribune[/caption]   11:30am: Rubel, a senior bank officer who lives on the building’s second floor, gives first-hand account: “We kept our doors and windows closed since the raid began. In the morning, we heard a saddened voice over a megaphone saying: ‘Jebunnahar, please come out, I want to see you alive. No one will hurt you.’ “Police urged the militants to surrender over a megaphone, assuring them of only legal action and that no physical harm would be done to them.” 11:45am: Jonaki Rasel, daughter of the house owner, tells the Dhaka Tribune: “A man named Imtiaz introduced himself as an online businessman and rented the ground floor flat in September. He said he would live with his wife and a child, with his sister visiting from time to time. “They did not behave suspiciously. They filled up the tenant information form provided by the DMP and we gave it to the police.” 12:24pm: Two explosions are heard inside the house. Two, including Inspector Shafik Ahmed of police’s Bomb Disposal unit, are injured in the blasts and are taken to hospital. 12:40pm: CTTC chief Monirul Islam tells the Dhaka Tribune: “A burqa-clad woman came out of the flat with a seven-year-old girl. She was holding a grenade on her waist which exploded at the main gate. The explosion injured two policemen and the girl with the woman. “The injured police and the child have been sent to the hospital. The woman is lying on the spot, we are not sure whether she is alive. Another militant is still inside the house.”   [caption id="attachment_41697" align="aligncenter" width="690"] Police in front of the militant hideout Rajib Dhar/Dhaka Tribune[/caption] 12:45pm: A senior CTTC official says the woman did not pay any heed to the repeated calls for surrender and kept saying: “We will go to heaven. We have no attachment to this world.” Police fire tear gas shells inside the house. 1:00pm: ADC Sanowar briefs the media: “We conducted the raid after being tipped off about fugitive militant Musa hiding there. He has not been found in the building. “So far we know that seven people were inside the flat. We tried to talk to them to surrender. Four of them – two women and two children – eventually came out in the morning. At 12:20pm, we told the others to surrender within two minutes or face the consequences. “Hearing the ultimatum, a woman came out with a girl. It seemed like she was going to surrender but it was a ruse. She tried to carry out the explosion with a grenade when she was in proximity of the police. Her body has not been moved from the spot. We believe she died in the blast.” [caption id="attachment_41692" align="aligncenter" width="690"] The militants are believed to be armed Rajib Dhar/Dhaka Tribune[/caption] 2:10pm: Gunshots are exchanged between the SWAT team and the last militant hiding inside the flat. 2:19pm: Criminal Investigation Department’s (CID) crime scene unit reaches the spot. 2:30pm: CTTC chief announces that the bomb disposal team will lead the entry into the flat to be followed by the CID unit. 2:40pm: Gunshots and explosions are heard coming from the flat. Law enforcers confirm seeing weapons and grenades lying on the floor. No movements are seen there. [caption id="attachment_41686" align="aligncenter" width="690"] Police encircled the building on early Saturday morning Collected[/caption] 3:02pm: CTTC chief Monirul confirms that the female suicide bomber has died of her injuries. 3:20pm: Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal and IGP AKM Shahidul Hoque arrive at the scene. 3:41pm: The home minister formally announces the end of the drive. 5:00pm: The bomb disposal unit is inside the flat. Dozens of grenades and vests can be seen on the floor. IGP Shahidul says the raid has been named Operation Ripple 24. The IGP says the injured child has been identified as Sabina, daughter of militant couple Iqbal and Shakila. It is not yet confirmed whether the suicide bomber was Shakila. CTTC chief Monirul says the bomb disposal unit will finish the clean-up by the morning today. 6pm: Police have called off the operation for the day citing fading daylight and nightfall. The CTTC chief says lack of light may jeopardise the operation. The suicide bomber’s body is still lying in front of the gate. Another suspected militant’s body is still inside the apartment. The CTTC chief says the operation will resume today to secure the grenades and any improvised explosives. 11:30pm: The suicide bomber’s body was sent to Dhaka Medical College morgue around 10:15pm, reports our DMCH correspondent.