Electoral violence persists nationwide. On Sunday, December 16, over 180 people were injured, political party offices ransacked, and cars vandalized in several towns across Bangladesh, as part of pre-election violence ahead of the December 30 general elections. Violent incidents notably occurred in the towns of Tangail, Narsingdi, Natore, Bhola, Noakhali, Jhalokathi, Rangamati, Sylhet, Netrakona, Satkhira, Bagerhat, and Lakshmipur. According to local sources, most of the people targeted by the violence are leaders and activists belonging to the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) opposition party.
Additional political rallies, protests, and related violence are likely across the country in the coming days ahead of the December 30 vote, along with large crowds, transportation and business disruptions, and a heightened security presence.
Bangladesh will hold general elections on December 30. The 2018 election will largely pit the ruling Awami League, led by three-term Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, against an opposition coalition dominated by the BNP. Political rallies in Bangladesh often result in violence and unrest and can cause widespread transportation and business disruptions. Work stoppages, official and unofficial roadblocks, and large crowds are possible near such rallies.
Individuals in Bangladesh in the coming weeks leading up to the December 30 election are advised to monitor the situation, avoid all political rallies and public demonstrations due to the risk of violence, refrain from discussing political topics in public, and anticipate large public demonstrations and associated disruptions, including a heightened security presence, road closures, and transportation and business disruptions.
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