23 December, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 01/04/2014
BANGLADESH
Elections in Bangladesh: strikes and violence push Christians and Hindus not to vote
by Sumon Corraya
Christians, Hindus and Buddhists speak of nationalists threats not to go to the polls . The opposition led by Khaleda Zia’s Bangladesh Nationalist Party ( BNP) began a new 48-hour strike today. The aim is to disrupt the parliamentary elections tomorrow and unleash chaos in the country. Polling stations and vehicles set on fire in Dhaka, Dinajpur and Feni .

Dhaka (AsiaNews) - Christians , Buddhists and Hindus fear for their safety ahead of nationwide parliamentary elections scheduled for tomorrow. What especially worries minorities are the violent strikes recently organized by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party ( BNP) of Khaleda Zia who are bringing the entire country to its knees . Today, the BNP launched 48 hour general strike in response to the refusal of the government led by premier Sheikh Hasina's Awami League to invoke a neutral party as a guarantor of the vote.

Many Christians state they will not vote like Buddhists and Hindus members of religious minorities. "I will not vote - explains Joachim Costa a Catholic of 55 - the elections will not be free and fair and we already know who will win ." The woman explains that people are afraid to go to the polls because of the constant threats of the opposition party . Even the Hindus will not go to vote . Raton Das , 42, told AsiaNews that the elections " are for a single party and it is useless to vote. Unfortunately there is no alternative". The population is discouraged by the contrast between the government and opposition, which instead of dialogue has taken the hard line of constant protest. The man explains that the streets there are even campaign posters to attract people to vote , "usually the campaign should take place in a festive atmosphere ."

Since January 1, BNP supporters have blocked roads, railways and waterways and in recent days there have been numerous incidents of violence and clashes with the police. Acts of guerrilla warfare, including the explosion of rudimentary bombs and the burning of automobiles, took place in Dhaka, Narayanganj , Bogra , Lakshmipur , Jhenaidah , Pabna , and Comilla . In Dinajpur ( North of the country ), two people died in a blaze of a truck set on fire by supporters of the BNP . Yesterday at Feni ( on the border with India ), five polling stations were set on fire .

According to the population , the now rampant and systematic violence is the worst the country has ever experienced in 40 years since Independence . Tensions rose after the opposition leader Khaleda Zia rejected an offer  from Prime Minister Hasina to join the oversight committee for the voting format of all parties. In 2013, over 500 people were killed in violence related to politics.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
11/27/2013 BANGLADESH
More bloodshed in Bangladesh: 8 dead and 300 injured in clashes with police
by Sumon Corraya
12/11/2012 BANGLADESH
General strike sets Dhaka on fire. Two dead and almost 300 injured
by Nozrul Islam
12/02/2013 BANGLADESH
A 131 hour strike. Catholic activist : People victim of political conflict
by Sumon Corraya
12/27/2013 BANGLADESH
Christians enjoy peaceful Christmas in Bangladesh but terrorism continues to cast its shadow
by Nozrul Islam
06/28/2010 BANGLADESH
Some 200 people arrested during protest march against the government in Dhaka
by William Gomes

Editor's choices
IRAQ - VATICAN
As 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' continues, Mosul bishop notes that Jesus is born amid refugee containers
by Amel NonaPersecuted by the Islamic state, refugees have lost everything: belongings, home, jobs, school, and their future. Yet, their faith and mission remain strong. For them, almost 900,000 euros have been raised and sent. Pope Francis sends a message of closeness. The campaign continues according to the Patriarch of Baghdad's proposal of fasting and moderation at Christmas and New Year, with the money saved offered to the Christians of Mosul.
IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch calls for fasting on Christmas Eve for refugees' return to Mosul
by Joseph MahmoudMar Louis Sako calls on the faithful not to celebrate Christmas and New Year in a "worldly" fashion, with pomp and abundance, out of solidarity with the people who fled the Nineveh plains, persecuted by the Islamic Army. AsiaNews is joining the fast proposed by the Patriarch and calls on all readers to give what they would have otherwise spent in support of the campaign 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul'.
IRAQ - ITALY
Letter from Archbishop of Mosul: Thank you for your aid, supporting the plight of refugees
by Amel NonaThe donations made through the "Adopt a Christian from Mosul" campaign are used to buy food, warm clothes, blankets for refugees and rent houses or caravans given the early onset of winter and. Two women have defended their Christian faith before the Islamist militants who wanted to convert them, despite the threat of death. A refugee among refugees, Msgr. Nona discovers a new way of being a pastor.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.