Singapore's Internal Security Department (ISD) arrested at least 27 Bangladeshi workers for allegedly planning terror activities in Bangladesh and other countries.
The Bangladeshi nationals, who worked at a local construction industry, were booked under the Internal Security Act (ISA) between 16 November, 2015, and 1 December, 2015, Singapore's Ministry of Home Affairs said in a press release on Wednesday.
Work passes of 26 of the 27 Bangladeshi nationals were cancelled and they were repatriated after the ISD found that they were supportive of Isis and al-Qaeda's ideologies. They were even following the radical teachings of Anwar al-Awlaki -- who is alleged to be the recruiter of al-Qaeda in Yemen.
"Twenty six of them were members of a closed religious study group that subscribed to extremist beliefs and teachings of radical ideologues like Anwar al-Awlaki. They supported the armed jihad ideology of terrorist groups like Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria," MHA said. They all have been repatriated to Bangladesh.
Several members in the group of 26 Bangladeshi nationals were allegedly planning to carry out terror attacks overseas. Some of them were even "contemplated travelling to and participating in armed jihad in the Middle East". However, they had no plans to carry out terror attacks in Singapore.
There were others who "were encouraged to return to Bangladesh and wage armed jihad against the Bangladeshi government" as "they bore grievances against the government over its actions against some Bangladeshi Islamic groups and leaders", the release said.
The workers had also sent monetary donations to entities that were supposedly linked to extremist groups in Bangladesh and were targeting to recruit other Bangladeshis to grow their number.
Besides, the group had in its possession graphic images and instruction details on how to conduct "silent killings" using different methods and weapons.
One of the 27 arrested Bangladeshi workers was not a member of the group but was "found to be in the process of becoming radicalised and was supportive of extremist preachers". He will be repatriated to Bangladesh after he completes his jail term "for attempting to leave Singapore via illegal and clandestine means".
MHA press release: