Bangladesh: 15 dead and 60 injured in Islamic protests


Police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse a Islamist protest. At least 15 people are reported to have been killed and more than 60 hurt in the clashes in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka.

At least 15 people died and 60 were injured in clashes between police and Islamic protesters in Bangladesh.

Among those killed in the protests which began Sunday and continued into Monday were eight people, including two policemen and a paramilitary soldier, the London Independent reported.

Another seven people died in Motijheel, a commercial area of Dhaka.

Tear gas and rubber bullets were fired into the crowds as tens of thousands gathered to call on the government to implicate tougher anti-blasphemy rules. 

Activists fear the final death toll will be much higher as the violence continued.

Footage on online blogs and websites showed bodies lying on stairwells with bullet wounds to the head or back, or in a pool of blood, CNN reported.

"Rioters vandalized markets and set fire to bookshops where the Holy Koran is sold. Thousands of Koran and religious books burned. They also attacked the ruling party's political office and national mosque," he told the BBC.

The movement has issued a 13-point charter of demands to the government, including greater segregation of men and women in the country.