It has been exactly six years since the horrific militant attack took place at the Holey Artisan Bakery in the capital in 2016. Chiefs of different diplomatic missions in Bangladesh have paid homage to the attack victims, by placing wreaths in front of the bakery building in Gulshan on Friday.
Ito Naoki, the Japanese ambassador to Bangladesh, was the first to pay homage amid tight security around 7:00am. He was followed by Italian ambassador Enrico Nunziata, US ambassador Peter Haas, and Indian high-commissioner Vikram K Doraiswami.
The Japanese ambassador told Prothom Alo after paying homage that, “Seven Japan nationals, who were employed at the metro rail line-1 project, were killed in the attack six years back. We will never forget them. Japan has important bilateral and friendly ties with Bangladesh. Work on the rail line-1 project will begin this September. It is very important for us to continue and finish this work.”
Indian high-commissioner Doraiswami termed the incident as tragic and commemorated all victims, including the Bangladeshi and Indian citizens.
“As a friend of Bangladesh, we feel very sad. It is very important to explore why such incidents are happening, and how they are taking place. We need to ensure stopping recurrence of such incidents through collaborative efforts,” he said.
Abul Hasan, officer in-charge of Gulshan police station, said the diplomats paid homage and commemorated the Holey Artisan Bakery victims in the morning. It is now a residential building and no chaos is expected here. If anyone wants to pay homage, they need to talk to police and pay homage maintaining law and order.
Militants carried out a brutal attack at the bakery on 1 July, 2016. They held the locals and foreigners who came to the restaurant hostage. At one stage, they killed 20 people there, including nine Italian, seven Japanese, one Indian and three Bangladeshi citizens. Two police officials were also killed while conducting a rescue operation there.