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Bangladesh

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Published on Sep 22, 2014

Whether one looks at the progress made in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, reforms to the police force aimed at ending human rights abuses in that institution, or the strong support that the reconciliation process is receiving from the Bangladeshi Government, particularly in terms of setting up the International Crimes Tribunal (ICT) in order to bring closure to the terrible crimes committed during the 1971 war of liberation, what is happening in Dhaka is worthy of praise.

Such praise is especially well deserved when we consider that Bangladesh exists under the continued threat of jihadi terrorist activity and the subsequent need constantly to reconcile security concerns with civil liberties – a concern that all of us in the West are increasingly acutely aware of. This is something we must take into consideration when thinking about this country.

The self-defeating conduct of the Bangladesh National Party during the recent general election and its ultimate boycott of that election have been unhelpful to one of the rare examples of a genuine secular democracy in South Asia.

Following the disasters in the garments industry, the EU must give more support to this strategic South Asian country.

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