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Motion for a resolution - B7-0038/2014Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on recent elections in Bangladesh

14.1.2014 - (2014/2516(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 122 of the Rules of Procedure

Phil Bennion, Marietje Schaake, Sarah Ludford, Louis Michel, Kristiina Ojuland, Johannes Cornelis van Baalen, Hannu Takkula, Ramon Tremosa i Balcells, Angelika Werthmann, Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Marielle de Sarnez, Robert Rochefort on behalf of the ALDE Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0034/2014

Procedure : 2014/2516(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  
Texts tabled :
Texts adopted :


European Parliament resolution on recent elections in Bangladesh


The European Parliament,

–   having regard to its previous resolutions on Bangladesh,

–   having regard to the Cooperation Agreement between the European Community and the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on Partnership and Development,

–   having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,

–   having regard to Rule 122 of its Rules of Procedure,


A.  Whereas uncontested elections in Bangladesh were held on the 5th January 2013;

B.  Whereas hundreds of opposition leaders and members were taken into custody before the elections;

C.  Whereas as many as 150 people have been killed in political violence in recent months, much of it carried out by opposition activists, but also by Awami League activists;

D.  Whereas the Election Commission said that nearly 500 voting centers had to be closed because of the violence, including arson;


E.  Whereas arbitrary arrests have continued even after the ruling Awami League party and its allies won the largely uncontested elections held on January 5, 2014;


F.  Whereas UN Secretary General Ban-Ki Moon said he regretted that the parties had not reached an agreement before the elections and called on all sides to ensure a peaceful environment, “where people can maintain their right to assembly and expression”;


G.  Whereas the United States, Canada, Germany, and others have called for credible elections to be held to resolve the ongoing crisis;


1.  Deeply regrets the failure to hold credible, free and fair national elections; calls for national reconciliation and dialogue between all political parties to ensure a way forward can be found for Bangladesh;

2.  Calls for a re-run of the election as soon as possible and for the formation of a neutral and impartial transitional government to oversee Bangladesh during the election period, which has the confidence of all political parties and the international community;


3.  Urges Bangladesh authorities to immediately end arbitrary arrests of opposition party members and others and to release those already detained;


4.  Call for the opposition to consider calling off their strikes as a signal of good will and to aid the process of coming to an agreement on a framework for a new election;


5.  Strongly condemns all acts of violence which occurred in the run-up to and during the recent elections, in particular against vulnerable populations, including women and children as well as religious and ethnic minorities;

6.  Expresses its sorrow for the deaths of at least 150 people due to on-going political violence and extends its condolences to the families and those injured;

7.  Believes that reform of the Bangladeshi Election Commission is urgently needed;

8.  Believes that if the Government of Bangladesh fails to negotiate an arrangement that will deliver free, inclusive and fair elections, the European Union should consider initiating, with the relevant international monitoring bodies, a review of trade preferences offered to Bangladesh;


9.  Calls on the international community to increase pressure for a political settlement that can deliver a credible election;


10.  Believes that while in some cases the government has acted appropriately to stop violence by some opposition forces, on-going arrests and repression contribute to the weakening of critics, limiting dissent, and consolidating ruling party power;


11.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the EU Council, the European Commission, the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the UN OHCHR and the government and parliament of Bangladesh.