Bangladesh has passed an ordinance allowing police to tap telephones, saying it is needed to fight terrorism. President Iajuddin Ahmed signed the law that was amended by the cabinet last week to make it easier for police to trace calls, particularly from mobile phones.
A spokesman says the new law will help the government fight Islamic militants as phone-tapping is essential to get adequate information about their network. Police have said that the leader of the banned militant group Jamayetul Mujahedin uses between 20 and 30 mobile phones at a time to avoid being detected.
Bangladesh has been hit by a series of bombings since August. Suicide bomb attacks by Islamic militants over the past two weeks have killed 21 people including judges, lawyers, police, journalists and the bombers themselves.