Bangladeshi authorities have arrested a primary suspect in the murder of atheist blogger Avijit Roy.
Farabi Shafiur Rahman was taken into custody by the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, Agence France-Presse reported. He allegedly threatened the victim on social media and spoke to another individual online about killing him.
A spokesman for the RAB — the country’s elite security force that mainly counters religious insurgency — described Rahman as a “fundamentalist blogger.” A source within the agency claimed that its officials had seen messages between Rahman and another person discussing Roy’s murder.
Roy, a Bangladeshi American living in Atlanta for the past 15 years, founded the Mukto-Mona blog — a collection of liberal writings that drew the ire of many hard-liners in Muslim-majority Bangladesh.
The 42-year-old writer was assaulted by two unidentified attackers while returning from a book fair with his wife in Dhaka last week. The assailants hacked him to death with machetes. His wife survived but was grievously injured.