Islamist hardliners marched in Bangladesh to arm Rohingya

Supporters of hardline Islamist group Hefazat-e-Islam take part in a protest calling on Bangladesh's government to arm Rohingya Muslims who have fled violence in neighbouring Myanmar, in Chittagong on October 6, 2017. Thousands of Islamist hardliners marched in Bangladesh's port city of Chittagong on October 5 calling for the government to arm Rohingya Muslim refugees fleeing a crackdown in Myanmar's troubled Rakhine state. / AFP PHOTO / STR
Vastavam web:  Thousands of Islamist hardliners marched in Bangladesh’s port city of Chittagong today calling for the government to arm Rohingya Muslim refugees fleeing a crackdown in Myanmar’s troubled Rakhine state.More than half a million Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh since attacks by militants belonging to the Muslim minority on Myanmar police posts sparked brutal reprisals by security forces.Up to 15,000 people joined the demonstrations in Bangladesh’s second largest city, police said, organised by hardline Islamist group Hefazat-e-Islam to protest against the killings of the Rohingya.
“We demanded a halt to the genocide of the Rohingya,” Hefazat spokesman Azizul Hoque Islamabad told AFP.”We have also asked the government to train and arm the Rohingya so that they can liberate their homeland,” he said.Islamist parties, including Hefazat, have staged several demonstrations over the issue in recent weeks and some firebrand leaders have called on the government to go to war with Myanmar to liberate Rakhine for the persecuted Rohingya.
Experts said Bangladeshi Islamist extremist groups could exploit the situation and forge closer ties with Rohingya militants.The plight of the Rohingya, a Muslim minority who are reviled and denied citizenship in Myanmar, has roused anger across the Islamic world, with protests held in Pakistan, Malaysia and Indonesia.