Free speech advocates have compared these deaths to the attack on Parisian satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, asking where the “We Are Charlie” supporters have gone. According to local media outlets, both bloggers were hacked to death by extremists for writing posts critical of Islam.
10 News Bangladeshi-American blogger Avijit Roy was attacked in Dhaka, the country’s capital city. His death sparked mass protests. The second blogger killed stood in solidarity with Roy. He was then attacked by students from a Muslim school who are in police custody.
But these deaths in Bangladesh go beyond issues of free speech. They show extremism is on the rise in a country with a tumultuous political landscape. Muslim extremist groups have aligned themselves with the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party to protest the secular state.
And the secular-religious divide has only grown in the last year. According to The Financial Times, secular demonstrators have called elderly Muslims to be hanged for crimes committed in Bangladesh’s bloody civil war