By Rukmini Callimachi
The first to be killed was a jogger, gunned down last September during his daily run in the leafy diplomatic quarter of Bangladesh’s capital, Dhaka. He was identified as a 50-year-old Italian aid worker, and the police say the men who murdered him had been given instructions to kill a white foreigner at random.
In October, a Japanese man was killed. In November, gunmen riding a motorcycle pulled alongside a Catholic priest in northern Bangladesh and opened fire, wounding him.
For the Islamic State terrorist group, which broadly advised operatives it sent to Europe to kill “anyone and everyone,” the group’s tactics in Bangladesh have seemed more controlled. In the past nine months, it has claimed 19 attacks in the South Asian country, nearly all of them targeted assassinations singling out religious minorities and foreigners. They included hacking to death a Hindu man, stabbing to death a Shiite preacher, murdering a Muslim villager who had been accused of converting to Christianity and sending suicide bombers into Shiite mosques.
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