Collective initiative of diplomats has raised hope: But saving lives needs a plan05 March 2015 Editorial Desk
Earlier UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had tasked his deputy Oscar Fernández-Taranco to liaise with the Bangladesh government and the opposition. The UN chief urged PM and BNP chief to engage constructively for a peaceful end to the crisis. US Secretary of State John Kerry on February 20 called for government action to peacefully end the turmoil. He also condemned the targeting of civilians by political parties and stressed the need for opposition parties to cease such attacks immediately. The European Union also deplored the ongoing violence against innocent citizens of Bangladesh and reiterated its call for dialogue to break the current political impasse. Pierre Mayaudon, ambassador and head of EU delegation to Bangladesh, made the call when he paid a courtesy visit to Prime Minister on February 12.
We found reasons to be more hopeful when the European parliamentary sub-committee on human rights came to the conclusion after a visit to Bangladesh that it is useless to go about appealing for dialogue among the political leaders and solution lies in arranging a free and fair election.
The crisis needs confidence building efforts among the political leaders who are not interested in such confidence building among themselves. The politics is all about intolerance and annihilation. So the confidence building or restoring peace efforts cannot come from the politicians themselves through mere persuasion. That is the reason why our people néed help from outside friends and the present collective move of the diplomats has raised hope of a peaceful solution.
If there is any reason for the absence of the Indian diplomats from any such move is not known to us. But as the nearest neighbour it is most desirable for us to know the mind of India about the crisis in Bangladesh. India helped in our liberation war for democracy so it is expected India will not remain a neutral spectator when democracy is dying in Bangladesh.
Many in Bangladesh are appalled to find the government ignoring the election demand as if it is not important for the government to face election as promised. The government is most anxious to tell that the opposition has no public support, they are anti-liberation and terrorists. Surely such an opposition alliance cannot have any public support. So why the government should find any suggestion of election unacceptable is a puzzle. The people are seeking an answer though not easy to find.
The immediate and urgent responsibility of the diplomats as well wishers of our people, who are in the midst of an initiative to see peace is restored, is to have a peace plan for implementation. The people must be given the chance to sort out the serious allegations the government makes against the opposition alliance.
We are, like many others, most worried to see the country is facing bloodbath and destruction in a leaderless situation.