Amnesty International urges govt to end crackdown on student protesters

Human rights group Amnesty International has called upon the government of Bangladesh to immediately put an end to the crackdown unleashed on student protestors who thronged the streets demanding safe roads.

It also demanded an immediate investigation into the allegations of forceful actions of the police and the pro-government activists on the agitating students, a press statement of the human rights group said today.

At least 115 students were injured as the police fired rubber bullets and hurled tear gas canisters at the students staging peaceful demonstrations. The students also came under attack by the pro-government counter-demonstrators, according to the statement.

Thousands of Bangladeshi students have taken to the streets of Dhaka since July 29 to demand safer roads after two teenagers were killed and 13 others injured while waiting at a bus stop outside a college when a speeding bus hit them.

“As Bangladesh heads towards elections later this year, it is crucial that the government adheres to its international obligations, including the protection of the rights to freedom of expression, association, peaceful assembly and security of persons,” said Deputy South Asia Director at Amnesty International Omar Waraich.

“The students have a right to peaceful assembly and physical security. These rights should be respected and protected,” the statement said.

Under international human rights law and standards, law enforcement officials must apply non-violent means as far as possible before resorting to the use of force and firearms, it also said.

When other means have proved ineffective, only then the law enforcers can resort to the use of force and firearms, and must still exercise restraint in doing so, it added.

Source: https://www.thedailystar.net/

Updated On: August 06, 2018

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