Secular Publisher Hacked to Death

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Sad news coming out of Bangladesh today. Secular publisher Faisal Abedin Deepan was brutally murdered by an Islamist group.

A publisher of secular books has been hacked to death in the Bangladeshi capital, police have said. In a separate attack in Dhaka, police said two other writers and a publisher were stabbed and shot at a publishing house.

Fears of Islamist violence have been growing in Bangladesh after at least four atheist bloggers were murdered in the country this year.

This was following an attack on another publisher and two writers earlier the same day.

…publisher Ahmed Rahim Tutul was attacked in the office of the Shudhdhoswar publishing house and seriously wounded. Two writers were also wounded in that attack. All three of the victims were hospitalised, and Tutul was in critical condition, police said.

Atheist bloggers have been frequent targets of violence in Bangladesh and other Islamic countries. Four atheist bloggers had been killed in Bangladesh earlier this year. Secular blogger Raif Badawi was flogged and is serving a 10-year sentence in Saudi Arabia for blasphemy and criticism of the government. Saudi Arabia passed a law last year classifying atheism as terrorism.

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While atheists in the Western world face discrimination, especially when surrounded by religious friends and family, we must remember that atheists in some parts of the world face imprisonment, torture and murder. We need to speak out and encourage our governments to discourage blasphemy laws and promote free speech and free thought.

Full story can be read here:

The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/oct/31/faisal-abedin-deepan-bangladesh-secular-publisher-hacked-to-death

BBC News: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-34688245

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