Japanese man shot dead in Bangladesh days after ‘IS attack’

Published October 4, 2015
Bangladeshi members of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) investigate the killing of Japanese Kunio Hoshi at the morgue of Rangpur medical hospital in Mahiganj village in Rangpur district, 300 kilometers (185 miles) north of Dhaka, Bangladesh, early Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015. — AP/file
Bangladeshi members of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) investigate the killing of Japanese Kunio Hoshi at the morgue of Rangpur medical hospital in Mahiganj village in Rangpur district, 300 kilometers (185 miles) north of Dhaka, Bangladesh, early Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015. — AP/file

DHAKA: A Japanese citizen was shot dead by gunmen in a northern Bangladesh town on Saturday, police said, days after an Italian aid worker was murdered in an attack claimed by the self-styled Islamic State.

Police said the victim, whom they named as Hoshi Kunio, aged 66, was riding in a rickshaw when he was shot dead in Kaunia town in Rangpur district at about 10:30am local time.

“He was travelling to the town from Rangpur city, where he had been living for a while, on a cycle rickshaw when his vehicle was stopped by three men riding on a motorcycle,” deputy police chief of Rangpur, Saifur Rahman, said.

Read: Militant group IS says it gunned down Italian in Bangladesh

The Bangladesh government sought to allay concerns over the safety of foreign nationals in the country after the second killing in a week, saying it was taking both murders “very seriously”. Home Minister Asaduzzaman Kamal said the killings of the two foreigners appeared to be linked.

“We see both the killings are similar. (In both the incidents,) three killers came on motorcyles and (they) fired shots from behind with pistols,” he said.

“The aim of the murder of innocent people in this way is to make an attempt to create instability in the country,” Kamal added as he vowed to bring the killers to book.

Kunio was a frequent visitor to Bangladesh and worked on a farming project in Rangpur, about 300 kilometres north of the capital Dhaka, police said.

“Two of the assailants shot him twice in the chest with pistols while the other waited with the motorbike ready to flee,” local police chief Rezaul Karim said, adding four people had been interrogated over the murder but none had been arrested.

Published in Dawn, October 4th, 2015

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