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Jan 19, 2012 at 09:10pm IST

Bangladesh Army foils attempt to topple Sheikh Hasina's government

Dhaka: The Bangladesh army has foiled a coup attempt against the Sheikh Hasina government in the neighbouring country.

According to the Bangladesh army, certain officers with 'extreme religious views' were behind the bid, adding that 16 officers, two of them retired, were involved in it.

The Army further said that the process of bringing the culprits to book had begun.

Army spokesman Brigadier General Muhammad Masud Razzaq said some of the officers involved had been detained and would be presented before a military court.

He also alleged that the conspiracy was instigated by Bangladeshi conspirators living abroad.

Razzaq said that the detained two former officers "bluntly admitted their role in the plot".

However, he declined to give details about the plot or the suspects but said they all were officers of "middle level" and the officer on the run was a major and of the arrested two one was a former Lieutenant Colonel and another was a Major.

"Banking on the army in the past, different evil forces availed political gains and made abortive attempts to do so but as an institution, military still has to bear the stigma," Razzak said.

The Awami League led by Hasina assumed power in 2009.

It must be noted that Bangladesh has a history of military governments. The army ran the country for 15 years until 1990.

(With Additional Inputs from PTI)