A massive attack by armed men on a Catholic convent in Bangladesh happened on July 7, reports Aid to the Church in Need.
The attack, by 50 to 60 men, was the first such instance of violence against a Catholic institution in Bangladesh. Authorities have arrested 12 Muslims in connection with the incident.
“It’s unprecedented because nuns are highly respected in Bangladesh,” said Bishop Sebastian Tudu of Dinajpur. He reported that the pastor was robbed and the nuns were brutally beaten and there were instances of attempted rape. He claimed the violence only ended when police arrived.
The attackers came to loot the mission.. They may also have been looking for land-ownership deeds, which poor and illiterate members of the community may have left to be kept safely at the mission. According to the Bishop the Diocese of Dinajpur had already been the scene of a number of attacks against Christian villages last year.
The Bishop said,
“It’s unprecedented because nuns are highly respected in Bangladesh. The attack is obviously a targeted and planned attempt at intimidation.”
“Nuns and priests are being attacked because they stand up for the disadvantaged and minorities.”
“The police are now investigating the case. They have promised to clear it up.”
He also relayed the the priests(45) and nuns(100) working in the diocese, and they now live in fear.