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BNP slams Russian ambassador’s remarks on 7 Jan election

Staff Reporter:

The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) on Friday termed unexpected the statement of Russian Ambassador to Bangladesh Alexander Mantytskiy on the 12th parliamentary election as the party thinks it has hurt the democratic sentiment of the people of Bangladesh.

In a statement, signed by BNP Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, the party called upon Russia to show due respect to the aspirations and democratic values of the people of Bangladesh.

“We have noticed that Russian Ambassador Alexander Mantytskiy described BNP’s statement on Russia’s role in the 12th parliamentary election as false and misleading. He also claimed that the people of Bangladesh elected the [current] government as 41.8% of people cast their votes in the election and most of them voted for the Awami League,” the statement read.

Protesting the remarks of the Russian envoy, the party said, “We would like to say his [Ambassador’s] unwarranted, unacceptable, and pro-Awami statement has hurt the democratic sentiment of the people of Bangladesh.”

It said all Bangladesh citizens who are not involved in the politics of the Awami League have lost their rights and freedom, and become subjugated in their own country.

“People from all walks of life have been subjected to discrimination, injustice, and oppression due to the corruption, misrule, and criminal activities perpetrated by the anti-people Awami League regime over the last 15 years.”

The statement said the aspirations of the people of Bangladesh and the democratic world are identical. “That common goal is to ensure democracy, good governance, human rights, and prosperity in Bangladesh through an elected and accountable government.”

The party said the freedom-loving people of Bangladesh expect that Russia, India, China, or any other country will not unduly support the misrule of the anti-mass and fascist Sheikh Hasina government by standing against the strong will of the people.

Recalling the long-standing cordial relations between Bangladesh and Russia, the statement said, “The BNP believes that long-term diplomatic success lies in building bridges of friendship between the peoples of the two countries. That is why the BNP urges Russia to show proper respect to the aspirations and interests of the people of Bangladesh, including their democratic values, determination for independence and great sacrifices.”

On Wednesday, Russian Ambassador to Bangladesh Alexander Mantytskiy said the BNP’s allegation regarding the role of Russia in forming the new government of the Awami League was “misleading or false.”

Talking to reporters after a call on Foreign Minister Hasan Mahmud, he also said no one should believe the statement in which the opposition party alleged that the current government is not the government of the people of Bangladesh, but of India, China, and Russia.

In the statement, the BNP said the 12th general election was not held to establish the voting rights of the people and reflect their aspirations.

The party claimed that a farcical dummy election was held on 7 January to deceive the nation and to help prolong the illegal power of the unconstitutional, fascist, and authoritarian regime of Sheikh Hasina and institutions and individuals loyal to her.

Justifying their position on the election, the BNP mentioned that various democratic countries, seven renowned international organisations, and various foreign observers said the election was not fair and free.

“Since the one-sided election on 7 January was not free, fair, and impartial, holding a new and meaningful election is now a mass demand of the people of Bangladesh. So, the BNP has been carrying out a simultaneous movement with all pro-democracy political parties to restore the people’s snatched voting rights,” said the statement.

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