Doesn’t take much to get these people worked up.
Dhaka, Bangladesh (CNN) – At least four people were killed Friday as thousands of Islamists took to the streets and clashed with police across Bangladesh including in the capital Dhaka, police and officials said.
Police fired bullets and tear gas shells while the rioters exploded a series of hand-made bombs. Demonstrators fought pitched battles with police, demanding punishment of bloggers who they accused of maligning Islam and the Prophet Mohammed.
The bloggers, who have had an active role in the ongoing campaign at Dhaka’s Shahbagh Square to ban Bangladesh’s Jamaat-e-Islami party and who support the death penalty for those guilty of wartime crimes from more than four decades ago, denied the accusations and said that the Islamist groups were smearing hate campaign against them.
Police and witnesses said thousands of people in support of a call given by a coalition of 12 Islamic parties came out of the mosques after Friday’s “juma prayer” and attacked police and journalists. They ransacked venues in different parts of the country where support for the ban on Jamaat-e-Islami and support for the death penalty were demanded.
The attacks came a day after protesters at Shahbagh Square suspended an around-the-clock sit-in after 17 days.