Wednesday, February 25, 2009

BDR Update: the negotiation phase

Prime Minister is having marathon meeting with ministers while Nanok has entered BDR HQ premises with white flag.

UNB has other updates:

A rebel BDR soldier put forward three conditions of the paramilitary force, such as announcement of amnesty, army pullout from around the Rifles Headquarters and direct talks with the Prime Minister, for an end to their revolt.

“We’ve been ignored since Pakistan times. Even after the independence of Bangladesh, we have been neglected physically and financially,” he told private television ATN Bangla over mobile phone from inside the besieged Headquarters of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR).

He said several army officers were held hostage and would be handed over to the government only after announcement of general mercy for the mutineers.The rebel, who did not disclose his name, said if their demands were not met, they would simply destroy all establishments around the Headquarters and blow up the Secretariat as well.

The rebel soldier refused to talk with the army and even with a Prime Minister’s delegation led by state minister for LGRD Jahangir Kabir Nanak and Whip Mirza Azam.

Another BDR member told private television Bangla Vision they staged revolt to press for increasing salary and other benefits. He denied any army officer having been taken hostage. He said trouble began at around 9:30am, when their darbar was underway as part of the annual-program BDR Week.

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