Bangladesh Blogger Flees to US

Bangladesh Blogger Flees to USBangladesh Blogger Flees to US

Award-winning Bangladeshi writer and human rights activist Taslima Nasreen has fled from India to the US after she was named as an al-Qaeda murder target, a rights group has said.

The US-based Center for Inquiry (CFI) said that she arrived in America last week, BBC reported. It said she was “specifically named as an imminent target” by the same extremists who killed three secular bloggers this year in Bangladesh.

The 52-year-old feminist writer was forced to leave Bangladesh in 1994 after receiving death threats from Muslim groups who condemned a number of her writings as blasphemous. She spent a decade in Europe and the US before India granted her a temporary residential permit in 2004.

The CFI said in a statement that it helped Nasreen to move to the US in order “to alleviate the immediate threat to her life”.

“Her safety is only temporary if she cannot remain in the US, which is why CFI has established an emergency fund to help with food, housing and the means for her to be safely settled,” the statement said.

“Dr Nasreen arrived in Buffalo, New York on Wednesday and was met by CFI staff.”

The CFI says that it has also heard from several other writers and activists in Bangladesh who have also been named as murder targets because of their “secular advocacy”.

Last month Bangladesh outlawed the Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT) after a blogger – the third to be murdered this year – was hacked to death. The ABT is the sixth militant group to be banned.

Police say that in each case, the attackers carried out their assaults on a busy street.