6 January 2014

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Polarization, Poor Turnout Mar Parliamentary Elections in Bangladesh,

Says Secretary-General, Saddened by Violence, Loss of Life

The following statement was issued today by the Spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

The Secretary-General is saddened by the loss of life and incidents of violence that marred yesterday’s parliamentary elections in Bangladesh, which were characterized by polarization and low participation.  He regrets that the parties did not reach the kind of agreements which could have produced a peaceful, all-inclusive election outcome.

He calls on all sides to exercise restraint and ensure first and foremost a peaceful and conducive environment, where people can maintain their right to assembly and expression.  Violence and attacks on people and property can never be acceptable.

The Secretary-General calls on the political parties to resume meaningful dialogue and to urgently address the expectations of the people of Bangladesh for an inclusive political process.  The United Nations will continue to support the country’s democratic processes in accordance with theprinciples of inclusiveness, non-violence, reconciliation and dialogue.

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For information media • not an official record