CHITTAGONG, Feb 22: Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) on Sunday unearthed a 'militant training centre' in a remote hilly area of Banshkhali upazila in Chittagong district.
The elite force also arrested five militants with a large haul of arms, ammunition and tools for military training from the spot.
The arrestees were identified as Mobassher Hossain, 17, Abdul Khalek, 21, Aminul Islam, 22, Habibur Rahman Ishak, 19, and Amir Hossain, 25.
The spot is situated at a reserved forest area in Sandhanpur village of the upazila.
RAB recovered three AK-22 rifles, six revolvers, a pistol and three LGs in the camp that also had a firing zone for shooting practice.
Assistant Director of Chittagong RAB-7 ASP Sohel Mahmud said acting on a tip-off, a RAB team raided the area from Saturday afternoon that had continued till Sunday morning and discovered the 'training centre' at Lotmoni Hill, a remote area that is about 2.5 kilometres away from the Upazila main road.
Commander Mufti Mahmud, Director of RAB's Legal and Media Wing, at an instant press briefing at the spot said the centre was used for imparting guerrilla training to the militants who were inspired by audio-visual clips from different international and domestic militant outfits.
"The militants primarily select people from poor families across the country and bring them to the camp for imparting guerrilla training and plane hijacking tactics and then they are sent to different places of the country after the training", commander Mufti said, adding that one Moulana Mobarak Hossain used the government reserved area under the cover of a livestock and poultry farm on the Lotmoni Hill at Sadhanpur Union.
The RAB was informed of its existence by interrogating 12 suspected militants, who were arrested from Hathazari on February 19.
The RAB team, however, could not arrest Mobarak or any trainer from the spot during the raid.
Earlier on Thursday, RAB-7 also found another militant training centre in Hathazari upazila of the district and arrested 12 suspected extremists from the coaching centre that posed as an Arabic literature and language coaching centre.
RAB also recovered multimedia mobile phones and micro-SD memory cards which contained audio-visual clips from different international and domestic militant outfits from their possession.
Based on the information provided by them, RAB conducted the raids in Banshkhali upazila and unearthed the 'training centre'.