Friday, 3 December, 2021

International condemnation pours in

  • Diplomatic Correspondednt
  • 20 October, 2021 12:00 AM
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International condemnation pours in

As the recent attacks on Hindus in the country have drawn international attention, the United States, United Nations and international rights bodies have come up with condemnation, saying the incidents are against the values enshrined in the Constitution of Bangladesh.

“Freedom of religion or belief is a human right. Every person around the world, regardless of their religious affiliation or belief, should feel safe and supported to celebrate important holidays,” a US State Department spokesperson said.

“The State Department condemns the recent reports of violent attacks in Bangladesh against the minority Hindu population,” the spokesman said.

“We send our condolences to the families of victims of recent religious violence. Freedom of religion is sacrosanct. Everyone must remain steadfast in opposing targeted violence and orchestrated hate, and work to ensure all are able to attend a religious service or celebration without fear of violence because of their faith. The United States stands with Bangladeshis of all beliefs calling to preserve diversity, unity, and mutual respect,” reads a statement of the US Embassy in Dhaka on Tuesday.

UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh Mia Seppo has said the recent attacks on Hindus, "fuelled by hate speech" on social media, are against the values of the constitution and need to be stopped. "We call upon the government to ensure protection of minorities and an impartial probe. We call upon all to join hands to strengthen inclusive tolerance," she said in a tweet on Monday,

Amnesty International has urged the authorities to take urgent steps to protect the members of the minority community in Bangladesh against any attack and ensure access to justice and effective remedies for victims.

Responding to the violent attacks on Hindu minority households and temples in Bangladesh during and after Durga Puja, Amnesty International’s South Asia Campaigner, Saad Hammadi, said the authorities must promptly, thoroughly, impartially and transparently investigate the incidents and bring those suspected to be responsible for the violence and vandalism to account through fair trials.

“Reports of a spate of attacks by angry mobs against members of the Hindu community, their homes, temples and puja pandals during the country’s biggest Hindu festival are symptomatic of the growing anti-minority sentiment in the country. Such repeated attacks against individuals, communal violence, and destruction of the homes and places of worship of minorities in Bangladesh over the years show that the state has failed in its duty to protect minorities,” said Hammadi. 

“Targeting religious sensitivities to stoke communal tension is a serious human rights violation and requires immediate and decisive action from the government to address the situation of minorities in the country,” he said.