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Bangladesh election is domestic affair: India

Published : 05 Jan 2024 10:59 PM | Updated : 06 Jan 2024 12:41 PM
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India has continued to describe the January 7 election as a domestic affair of Bangladesh, while China said the next election will be a milestone for the democratic process of Bangladesh.

"We have been very consistently saying that the election in Bangladesh is the domestic affair of Bangladesh," official spokesperson at the Indian Ministry of External Affairs Randhir Jaiswal told reporters in New Delhi on Thursday.

Responding to a question at a media briefing he said it is for the people of Bangladesh to decide their future."So that is where we are. This question was asked in the last presser also. My predecessor then answered this question as well. So I will leave it at that," said the newly appointed MEA spokesperson.

On the other hand, China hoped that the election would be held smoothly.

"Hopefully, it will be a successful and smooth election. It will be a milestone for the continuation of democratic process in Bangladesh," Chinese Ambassador to Bangladesh Yao Wen told reporters on Thursday.

From China, he said, they hope the election will be held successfully and Bangladesh will be "stronger, more resilient and united" after the election.

US spokesperson Matthew Miller said they support a free and fair election in Bangladesh.

"We have made that quite clear a number of times. We will watch the elections very closely," he said.

But of course, Miller added that he would never speculate in advance about what actions they may or may not take in response to any development.

The United Nations has said they are watching the election process in Bangladesh "closely."

"We hope that all the elections happen in a transparent and organized manner. That’s all we have for now," Associate Spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General Florencia Soto Niño told reporters in a briefing in New York on January 3.

The Election Commission has taken all the preparations to hold the 12th national parliamentary election on January 7 peacefully.

Opposition BNP is boycotting the polls.

Election expert teams from NDI-IRI, the European Union (EU), are already in Dhaka, while foreign observers from a number of countries, including a team from Commonwealth, will observe the polls.

An election observer mission from Japan is scheduled to be in Bangladesh from January 5 to 9 to support the fair implementation of the general election scheduled for January 7, 2024.

The mission, dispatched by the government of Japan, will be headed by Watanabe Masato, former Japanese ambassador to Bangladesh, and will consist of officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan and the Embassy of Japan in Bangladesh as well as an outside expert.

In addition to observing the casting and counting of votes, the mission will exchange views and information with the Bangladesh Election Commission and election observer missions from other countries, said the Japanese Embassy in Dhaka on Thursday.

The dispatch of the election observer mission is part of Japan's cooperation for the consolidation of democracy in Bangladesh in response to the Bangladesh Election Commission’s announcement that it would welcome international election observers.

With the opposition BNP boycotting the January 7 polls, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her party Awami League party are all but guaranteed a fourth consecutive term, analysts say.

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