US calls for creating environment for peaceful rallies in Bangladesh

US State Department spokesperson Ned PriceReuters

The United States hopes the next parliamentary elections in Bangladesh will be held in a free and fair manner.

The US has urged the Bangladesh government to create an environment so that all including the opposition political parties can organise peaceful meetings and rallies without any fear or repression.

Replying to a query, US State Department spokesperson Ned Price made the call at a regular press briefing on Monday.

Prime minister Sheikh Hasina recently warned that BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia will be sent to jail if the party does excess in the name of anti-government movement.

When asked whether US will make a demand for immediate release of Khaleda Zia, Ned Price said democracy and human rights are at the centre of US policies including its relations.

He said they regularly discussed the issues with all countries including Bangladesh across the world. As they openly express the issues from the briefing room, the issues also come up for discussion at the personal level, the US official added.

By doing this for the sake of strengthening democratic process and political institutions, the US made the call for establishing rule of law and protecting human rights for Bangladeshis.

Ned Price said, "We have respect for the next election and political process in Bangladesh. We hope the people will be able to choose their government through a free and fair election with active pariticipation of civil society. This is our expectation. Our support will continue to this end."