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Bangladesh publisher arrested

A prominent lawyer and newspaper publisher who is tied to Bangladesh’s political opposition was denied bail Tuesday after his arrest on defamation charges, heightening concerns about a crackdown on dissent ahead of national elections.

Police arrested Mainul Hosein late Monday in a raid on an opposition leader’s home in the capital, said Mahbub Alam, a joint commissioner of the Detective Branch of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police.

Hosein is the publisher of the English-language New Nation daily and heads its editorial board. Magistrate Kaisarul Islam gave no explanation for denying Hosein bail at a brief hearing Tuesday.

A court in northern Bangladesh issued a warrant for Hosein’s arrest Monday, with Alam saying the case was linked to an Oct 16 television talk show appearance where Hosein called a journalist “characterless” after she asked him if he represented the opposition. (AP)

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