Terrorism is a heinous crime against humanity. Bangladesh endured several bleed and kill terror attacks conducted by a number of radical local organizations from 1990’s. These extremist organizations have risen to prominence through target killing, bomb attacks and sabotage. The emerging need of a specialized police unit for Countering Terrorism became inevitable due to the series of attacks and their modus operandi. After the Holey Artisan Bakery incident on 1st July 2016, the image of Bangladesh as a peaceful country became at stake. The Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh has taken the challenge adopting the Zero Tolerance Policy to uproot terror threat, militancy and violent extremism in cooperation with all stakeholders of home and abroad.
As the reflection of firm determination, the Government approved Anti Terrorism Unit (ATU) of Bangladesh Police on September 2017 as a proactive, Intel-led modern technology based specialized unit. In addition, to strengthen terrorism countering capacity of ATU, the Government approved “The Anti Terrorism Unit Rules” on November 2019. According to its legal mandate, ATU is the lead coordinating, operating and investigating body for countering terrorism (CT), countering violent extremism (CVE) as well as preventing violent extremism (PVE) countrywide. To that end we are working to create mass awareness and reshaping people’s mindset to stand united against terrorism, extremism and extreme ideologies.