Political brinksmanship driving Bangladesh to the edge: Pillay

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UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay.

Rising levels of political violence in Bangladesh as the major parties fail to resolve their differences over the conduct of elections have become a cause of major concern for UN Human Rights chief Navi Pillay.

In recent weeks, scores of people have been killed, hundreds injured, and there has been extensive destruction of property as supporters of both parties have been clashing with each other and with the security forces.

Pillay says "In the past week, we have seen acts as extreme as protestors throwing molotov cocktails onto public buses without allowing the occupants to escape, leaving women and children with horrific burns," adding, "Such levels of violence are deeply shocking for the Bangladeshi people, the vast majority of whom want — and deserve — a peaceful and inclusive election."

The High Commissioner also expressed concern about the on-going arrest and detention of key opposition leaders by the law enforcement agencies.

She says "Whatever their differences, political leaders on both sides must halt their destructive brinkmanship, which is pushing Bangladesh dangerously close to a major crisis.

Instead, they must fulfil their responsibility and use their influence to bring this violence to an immediate halt and seek a solution to this crisis through dialogue," Pillay added.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration:  1’08″

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