UNITED NEWS OF BANGLADESH (Bangladesh), AP
DHAKA - At least 15 people have died in and around the capital of Bangladesh on Monday in clashes between police and Islamic hardliners demanding that the nation implement an anti-blasphemy law.
Eight people, including two policemen and a paramilitary soldier, were killed during clashes in Kanchpur just outside the capital, Dhaka, and another seven people died in Motijheel, a commercial area of Dhaka, according to AP.
Protesters blocked roads in the area with burning tires and logs during more than five hours of clashes, television footage showed.
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The private United News of Bangladesh reported that violence erupted after security forces fired tear gas and rubber bullets in the central commercial district.
Islamic activists have been demanding that the government enact an anti-blasphemy law. The government in the Muslim-majority nation has rejected the groups' demands, saying Bangladesh is governed by secular liberal laws.