Dhaka - Bangladesh security forces have detained seven men linked with the banned armed group Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and seized weapons during a raid in the capital Dhaka.

The raid was carried out on Thursday and police said they have recovered grenades, suicide belts, firearms and other explosives from a building in Dhaka's Mirpur district.

None of the seven arrested have been named but three are "key members" of the JMB, according to the spolice spokesperson Monirul Islam.

According to Islam, the police had arrested a JMB member on Wednesday and, based on the information provided, it carried out the raid early on Thursday. 

The discovery of the explosives forced authorities to evacuate residents from the area of the raid [Mahmud Hossain Opu/Al Jazeera]

The JMB members fought back as police raided the building, tossing a grenade at the security forces but there were no reports of any injuries, said the police.

Sanowar Hossain, head of the bomb disposal unit, said 16 grenades were found inside the apartment and the building was evacuated and cordoned off following the raid.

"If we dispose of the 16 improvised explosive device grenades here, the building would have been blown off. So we opted to do that in an open space which is 100 metres away from the building," said Hossain.

Authorities said the group had rented the apartments out four months ago identifying themselves as students.

Meanwhile, the police spokesperson Islam added that an additional 200 other explosives could have been produced from the substances found in the apartment.

Source: Al Jazeera