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Rohingya militants 'saddened' by killing of civil society leader

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By Reuters
Rohingya militants 'saddened' by killing of civil society leader-statement
Rohingya militants 'saddened' by killing of civil society leader-statement   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2021

-Rohingya militants demanded accountability on Friday for the killing of a top civil society leader by gunmen in a refugee camp in Bangladesh, saying “criminals” were responsible and decrying “finger-pointing” after the death.

Friday’s Twitter statement was made by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army, one of several armed groups operating in sprawling refugee camps in the south of Bangladesh.

ARSA said it was shocked and saddened by Wednesday’s killing of Mohib Ullah, who led one of the largest of several community groups to emerge since more than 730,000 Rohingya Muslims fled neighbouring Myanmar after a military crackdown in August 2017.

“It is time for bringing the criminals to account instead of finger-pointing with baseless and hearsay accusations,” the group said in its statement, blaming the shooting on “transnational border-based criminals”, but citing no evidence.

Mohib Ullah, who was in his late 40s, was a moderate leader who had faced threats from hardliners for years, people close to him have said. Speaking after the shooting, his brother, Habib Ullah, had blamed ARSA members for his death.

The United Nations and the United States have condemned the killing and urged a swift investigation by authorities in Bangladesh.

Violent men claiming affiliation to ARSA and other gangs rule the camps at night, refugees say, kidnapping critics and warning women against breaking conservative Islamic norms.