Buddhist monk hacked to death in Bangladesh

An elderly Buddhist monk was hacked to death in Bangladesh, police said.

The incident, which reportedly took place in the southeastern district of Bandarban, happened amid the spate of murders of religious minorities in the Muslim-majority country (Buddhists make up only 1 per cent of the country’s population).

The 75-year-old monk, identfied as Maung Shue U Chak, was found dead in a pool of his own blood inside a Buddhist temple in Baishari, about 350 kilometers (220 miles) southeast of Dhaka.

“We saw human footprints in the temple and found that four to five people entered the compound,” said Jashim Uddin, deputy police chief of Bandarban.

“His body was found with a slit throat. Police are saying he was most likely killed on Friday night,” reported Al Jazeera’s Tanvir Chauwdhury. “From 2013 until now we have seen a spree of murders in similar fashion … This is a major concern for the Bangladesh government.”

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack, but reports are saying that this is similar to the recent murders of Sufi, Shiite and Ahmadi Muslims, Hindus, Christians and foreigners by Islamic militants (IS) affiliated with al Qaeda.

Police are saying that it appeared Maung Shue U Chak was attacked by at least four people.

The BBC reported that this recent killing follows the murder of two prominent gay activists, a law student, and a professor in April; and a beheading of a Hindu priest in northern Bangladesh in February.

The Bangladeshi government denies that there are IS members in the country.