Bangladesh

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Bangladesh (officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh) is a country in South Asia which is bordered by India and to a lesser extent Myanmar. It is a heavily Muslim country with a substantial Hindu minority. It was called Eastern Pakistan, being the easternmost region of Pakistan before the Bangladeshi War of Independence in 1971, an armed conflict which lasted for 9 months and resulted in the creation of the nation of Bangladesh and resulted in it being severed from Pakistan. The national language is Bangla or Bengali.

The war with Pakistan started due to a variety of factors but chiefly because of the suppression of the ethno-linguistic and religious identity of Bengali Hindus and Muslims in East Bengal. The Pakistani army used extreme force to suppress the rebellion, and engaged in a systematic genocide of Bengalis, chiefly targeting Hindus[1], for total eradication.[2][3] At the onset of the Bengali nationalist rebellion led by the Awami League, Pakistani forces targeted Hindus, Bengali intellectuals, students and political activists, especially at college campuses in the capital Dhaka and other cities.[4][5]. The Bangladesh Liberation War war ended with Indian intervention, resulting in the total defeat of Pakistani forces, and the new nation of Bangladesh was formed on 1971. In 1974 Bangladesh suffered a great famine. [2]

It is the third largest Muslim nation.

Human rights

Today, extensive human rights violations by the Bangladesh Government are reported by Human Rights Groups. The more egalitarian Awami League government was ousted and replaced by the Islamic Fundamentalist government of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party[3][4][5] [6][7]

Dr. Janice Shaw Crouse of Concerned Women for America’s (CWA) Beverly LaHaye Institute and CWA’s expert in anti-trafficking efforts, called upon the government of Bangladesh in June of 2007 to end the house arrest of Sigma Huda, the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons. Suda has made attempts to attend official meetings in New York, Belarus and Sweden but has been prevented from leaving the country.

Crouse said, “Sigma Huda provides an international voice for those women and children who are victimized and exploited by criminals who use human beings as commodities and profit from the odious modern day slave trade. Efforts to censor her reports or to curtail her work is a crime against human rights and violates the immunity that she receives as a United Nations’ diplomat commissioned to protect some of the most vulnerable people around the world.”

Crouse added, “CWA calls on President Bush — who is at the forefront in fighting trafficking in persons and who calls such trafficking ‘modern day slavery’ — to use his credibility on the issue of sex trafficking to enlist the other leaders who are attending the G8 meeting in Germany to urge the caretaker government of Bangladesh to free Miss Huda to fulfill her responsibilities as Special Rapporteur. CWA also calls on the United Nations’ Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to use the authority of the United Nations to ensure that its Special Rapporteur is able to carry out her duties without harassment or interference.” [6]

References

  1. ↑ The Sunday Times, London, June 13, 1971, From The Sunday Times, June 13, 1971:
    The Government's policy for East Bengal was spelled out to me in the Eastern Command headquarters at Dacca. It has three elements: 1. The Bengalis have proved themselves unreliable and must be ruled by West Pakistanis; 2. The Bengalis will have to be re-educated along proper Islamic lines. The - Islamization of the masses - this is the official jargon - is intended to eliminate secessionist tendencies and provide a strong religious bond with West Pakistan; 3. When the Hindus have been eliminated by death and fight, their property will be used as a golden carrot to win over the under privileged Muslim middle-class. This will provide the base for erecting administrative and political structures in the future.
  2. ↑ Asadullah Khan The loss continues to haunt us in The [[Daily Star (Bangladesh)|]] December 14, 2005
  3. ↑ U.S. Consulate (Dacca) Cable, Sitrep: Army Terror Campaign Continues in Dacca; Evidence Military Faces Some Difficulties Elsewhere, March 31, 1971, Confidential, 3 pp
  4. ↑ Sajit Gandhi The Tilt: The U.S. and the South Asian Crisis of 1971 National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 79 December 16, 2002
  5. ↑ [1]
  6. ↑ CWA Urges Bangladesh to Release Trafficking Diplomat From House Arrest, Concerned Women for America Press Release, 6/7/2007.