UN, US monitoring polls, Yunus issues


Staff Reporter  :
Both the United Nations and the United States have said that they are closely overseeing the 12th parliamentary election in Bangladesh and the conviction issue of Nobel Laureate Dr Muhammad Yunus.

“We’re watching the process closely, and we hope that all the elections happen in a transparent and organized manner,” said Florencia Soto Nino, Associate Spokesperson for the Secretary-General during a press briefing on Wednesday.

On the other hand, US State Department said, “We support a free and fair election in Bangladesh.

We have made that quite clear a number of times. We will watch the elections very closely, but I would never speculate in advance about what actions we may or may not take in response to any development.”

Matthew Miller, State Department Spokesperson, said this during a press briefing in Washington DC on Wednesday.


When asked about US government response regarding the recent conviction of Dr Yunus for the violation of labour laws as said in the verdict of the court in Bangladesh, Miller said, “Muhammad Yunus has made significant contributions to the alleviation of poverty around the world, as reflected in his Nobel Peace Prize and numerous other international honors.”

“We have been following the case against him closely. We’ve seen, of course, the widespread international criticism of the verdict.

For our part, we have encouraged the Bangladeshi Government to ensure a fair and transparent legal process, and we will continue to follow any further developments closely,” he said.

Earlier on January 1, Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen said that the legal conviction of Nobel laureate Dr. Muhammad Yunus, who also serves as the Chairman of Grameen Telecom, for the violation of labour laws, will not adversely affect US-Bangladesh diplomatic relations.