Election day brings violence and unrest in Bangladesh

Election day brings violence and unrest in Bangladesh

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Parliamentary elections in Bangladesh released the preliminary results on January 6, 2014 and they have indicated that the ruling Awami League has won the country’s elections. The outcome of the elections in Bangladesh was never in doubt, as the poll has been boycotted by the main opposition party.

bangladesh violence

Protesters from the opposition party burnt polling stations, in addition to destroying ballots across the country. It has been reported that the violence in Bangladesh claimed lives of 18 people by now. Election officials revealed that voter turnout was very low on January 5, 2014 and many activists’ attacks caused voting to be stopped at over 150 polling stations.

The government deployed thousands of troops across the country, but despite their presence, violence could not be stopped at polling stations. The Bangladesh Nationalist Party called voters to boycott and stated that the election was ‘farcical’. The opposition party’s move led to the victory of the Awami candidates, as they ran unopposed in over a half of the constituencies in Bangladesh.

The former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia – who leads the opposition – has demanded that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina must step down from his position and give power to an interim government to oversee the election. However, Hasina refused these demands and said that such traditional practice has led to political unrest.

Photo Credits: The News