Dhaka, Bangladesh.jpg
Photograph: EPA/ABIR ABDULLAH

A British national and a university student were arrested in Dhaka in connection with a deadly attack and hostage-taking at a cafe in the Bangladeshi capital last month, police said Thursday.

Masudur Rahman, a deputy commissioner of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police, said they were arrested on Wednesday night and had already appeared in court.

The duo are suspected of assisting the militants who stormed the cafe, according to documents submitted by police to the court. Police believe the militants used one of their cell phones.

The court granted police eight days to interrogate the pair.

Hasnat Karim, a former university teacher and a British citizen, and student Tahmid Hasib were in the Holey Artisan Bakery when attackers entered the eatery and took hostages on July 1.

Twenty civilians, mostly foreign nationals, died in the upscale bakery.

Two security personnel died, and six suspected militants were killed by commandos who stormed the restaurant.

Police said the assailants used the Wickr secure messaging app to communicate during the attack. The app was found on Karim's cell phone.

The militants entered the cafe at 8:44 pm and downloaded the app at 8:57 pm, according to police.

Police had earlier offered a 2-million-taka reward (25,500 dollars) for information leading to the arrest of the masterminds behind the attack.

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