Five Temples torched by Muslim rioters in Bangladesh

Sepmtember 30, 2012

According to news agencies (afp, dpa, kna) today 25. 000 Muslim rioters have torched at least five Temples and about hundred houses in Ruma, Bangladesh, after local Buddhist Uttam Barua has been accused to have put a photo insulting Koran on facebook.

The Bangladeshi journalist Sunil Barua said “I have seen 11 wooden temples, two of them 300 years old, torched by the mob. They looted precious items and Buddha statues from the temples. Shops owned by Buddhists were also looted.” According to other reports the angry crowd chanted “God is Great” while setting fire to the centuries-old temples.

The local district administrator Joinul Bari stated that, “At least 100 houses were damaged. We called in army and border guards to quell the violence.” Security forces were deployed to contain the uprising and an assembly ban has been announced.  Authorities did neither confirm whether police arrested any of the rioters nor there have been any casualties reported.

Bangladeshi Home Minister Mohiuddin Khan Alamgir said the attacks were preplanned, and vowed to bring the perpetrators to justice.

“The attack was conducted in a coordinated manner. Temples and houses were set on fire using patrol and gun powder. It would have been impossible if the attacks were not planned,” he told Bangladesh’s Bdnews24. He further promised that government would provide financial assistance for reconstruction of the damaged houses and temples.

Muslims publicly rallied against the picture and called for Barua’s arrest before launching their attacks. However, several Facebook users said that Barua did not post the photo. He was linked to the photo after group called ‘Insult Allah’ tagged his name on the image.

About 90% of the Bangladeshi 153 million population is Muslim. Buddhist form a minority and make less than 1% of the people. They are mostly found in the South East close to the border to the neighbouring Buddhist country Birma. Like in many other Muslim countries the recently published US-made anti-islmic film “Innocence of Muslims” has caused massive violent protests in Bangladesh. On Sunday Buddhist monks in the capital city of Bangladesh Dhaka formed a human chain across the town to demonstrate for a peacefull living together.

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