Indian teenager among 20 killed in Bangladesh cafe siege

People react near the Holey Artisan restaurant after Islamist militants attacked the upscale cafe in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on July 2, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW DELHI (AFP) - An Indian teenager was among 20 foreigners who were killed after being taken hostage by a group of attackers at an upmarket cafe in Bangladesh capital Dhaka, a government minister said Saturday (July 2).

Tarushi Jain, 19, was caught up in the horrific 11-hour siege at the Holey Artisan Bakery, a Western-style cafe popular with foreigners located in the diplomatic quarter of the capital.

"I am extremely pained to share that the terrorists have killed Tarushi, an Indian girl who was taken hostage in the terror attack in Dhaka," India's Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj posted on Twitter.

Swaraj said she had spoken to the girl's grief-stricken father and conveyed her condolences to him.

"The country is with them in this hour of grief," she tweeted.

Jain had finished her schooling from the American School in Dhaka and was pursuing her studies at the University of California, Berkeley, Swaraj added.

The Bangladesh army said most of the slain civilians were either Italian or Japanese and that many had been hacked to death with sharpened weapons.

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi strongly condemned the attack in a post on Twitter.

"The attack in Dhaka has pained us beyond words. I spoke to (Bangladesh) PM Sheikh Hasina and strongly condemned the despicable attack," the premier tweeted.

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