Published: Fresh U. June 4, 2016. Viewable here.
During the sacred month of Ramadan, Muslims engage in the five pillars of Islam, four of which they observe year-round – declaring their faith, partaking in daily prayer, giving to charity and taking part in the pilgrimage to Mecca – but the fifth pillar, fasting from dawn until dusk, is specific to the holy holiday. This year’s Ramadan, which ends on Wednesday, has become a time for terrorism and killings; according to The New York Times, jihadists told followers that the sacred holiday should serve as a “month of pain for infidels everywhere.”
Suicide bombers in Istanbul who killed 44 in the Ataturk airport, a suicide bombing which killed six Jordanian border patrollers, eight suicide bombers in Lebanon who killed five people, suicide bombers in Yemen who killed 38 soldiers, a shooting spree in Orlando which left 50 dead, a suicide bombing in Baghdad which left 126 dead and a Bangladesh hostage crisis which left 20 dead are terrorist attacks ISIS has claimed responsibility for which have all occurred during this holy month of Ramadan.
On Saturday, July 2, the Holey Artisan Bakery cafe in Dhaka, Bangladesh’s capital, foreigners, who were mostly traveling for business, were weeded out and killed by terrorists. According to the Associated Press, customers in the bakery were given a test – if they could recite portions of the Quran they were spared, if not, they were tortured and killed.
The hostage crisis, which lasted 10 hours, left 28 victims, some of whom are identified here by the BBC. Six of the attackers were killed, as well as two of Bangladesh’s police officers. Nine of those killed were Italians traveling for business from the textile industry. Seven travelers from Japan, who worked either for a consulting firm or foreign aid government agency, were among the victims. Another professional, a Bangladeshi native, was also killed.
Also among those killed were three international students who had been studying abroad in the United States. Tarishi Jain, a UC Berkeley student and India native who had taken an internship in Dhaka, according to Berkeley News, was a sophomore in college and economics major. Faraaz Hossain, who was originally born in Dhaka, and Abinta Kabir, originally from Miami, were both studying at Georgia’s Emory University, as reported by WSB-TV Atlanta. The report states that Hossain and Kabir were friends, the former was set to start business school at the university and the latter had just completed her freshman year.
Bangladesh’s Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina Wazed, declared July 3 and 4 national days of mourning for the victims of the Dhaka attack. She has announced a strong, no-tolerance policy for terrorism since 2010.
“I want to unequivocally state that terrorism will not be allowed in the soil of Bangladesh,” Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, whose family was assassinated by terrorists, said in 2010, according to the General Assembly of the United States.
More recently, in a statement following the Dhaka attack, The Wall Street Journal released that the Prime Minister said “Islam, a religion of peace, shouldn’t be tainted by acts of hate,” in a press release and encouraged the people of Bangladesh to rise above heinous acts of terrorism.