(dpa) - Britain and Bangladesh agreed in principle to step up joint action against suspected terrorists, officials said Thursday.
The agreement followed talks between visiting British Home Secretary Jacqui Smith and Bangladeshi government leaders, including Home Affairs Adviser MA Matin, focusing on cooperation on counterterrorism campaigns, a Bangladeshi government spokesman said.
Smith, who arrived in Dhaka Tuesday on a tour of South Asia, said the terrorist outfits in both countries would be identified by sharing intelligence in a move that signals closer bilateral collaboration on the fight against terrorism.
Smith said she appreciated Bangladesh's anti-terrorism efforts but also said the moderate Muslim country had not been able to uproot terrorism from its own territory and needed external support to wipe out simmering religious militancy.
The Army-backed interim government banned the Islamist militant group Jamiatul Mujahedin and hanged half a dozen religious extremists for masterminding suicide bombings on political rallies, judges, cinema halls and religious shrines across the country in recent years.
Smith assured British support of Bangladesh's efforts to eliminate religious extremism.
Bangladesh grabbed world attention when an opposition political rally in Dhaka was bombed on August 2004 by a suspected local terrorist outfit, Harkatul Jihad.