Stop unlawful action against protestors: EU

Police baton-charge agitating students near the BRTA office in the city's Mirpur-13 around noon on Tuesday, July 31, 2018. Students of several colleges in the area brought out the procession, demanding justice for the two college students who were killed in a road crash in Kurmitola area on Sunday. Photo: Collected

Aug 7 2018 - The European Union has expressed concern over protest and violent clashes in Dhaka that triggered since deaths of two college students in road crashes.

In a statement released today, the European Union heads of mission to Bangladesh called for remaining calm and have respect towards the right to peaceful protest.

“We expect all sides to remain calm and to respect the right to peaceful protest. Incidents of unlawful or disproportionate violence or action against protestors, journalists or others need to stop; those that happened must be investigated and perpetrators held to account,” said the statement of nine envoys based in Dhaka.

The school-children’s protests highlighted fears over road safety and the enforcement of laws and regulations on the roads in Bangladesh, it said.

The Government’s recognition of the need for action is a welcome step and we therefore expect further Government action to address this without delay, it added.

The signatories are envoys of the UK, Denmark, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Sweeden, Netherlands and chief of delegation of the European Union.

UN Youth Envoy lauds protests

UN Youth Envoy Jayathma Wickramanayake has lauded the student protests.

She tweeted: “My visit to Bangladesh couldn’t have been more timely! Talking about #SafeSpaces4Youth I admired the resilience of young ppl demanding #RoadSafety & called on the government & other actors to end violence immediately & ensure the safety of young ppl expressing their concerns.”

Norway ‘deeply regrets’ violence on peaceful student demo

The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Dhaka has expressed deep regrets for the “recent outbreaks of targeted violence against peaceful, student-led demonstrations in support of safer roads in Bangladesh.”

The embassy published a post on its Facebook page today in this regard.

“Norway deeply regrets recent outbreaks of targeted violence against peaceful, student-led demonstrations in support of safer roads in Bangladesh,” the statement read.

In the statement, the embassy also expressed admiration for students and schoolchildren for exercising their democratic rights of assembly and free speech.

“Students and schoolchildren exercising their democratic rights of assembly and free speech are deserving of our admiration and protection.”

“They represent strength, not dangerous discord,” the post added.

This story was originally published by The Daily Star, Bangladesh

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