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Bangladesh PM vows to continue anti-drug operations

Ns News Online DeskNs News Online Desk: Over 120 people have been killed and at least 10,000 arrested since the Bangladeshi police started countrywide anti-drug operations on May 14.
Advocate Sultana Kamal, renowned human rights activist and the chairperson of Transparency International Bangladesh, has urged that any kind of extrajudicial killing should stop.

DHAKA: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said no one involved with drug dealing in the country will be spared in the country’s “war on drugs.” She was addressing a news conference on Wednesday afternoon at her official residence Ganabhaban.

One hundred and twenty-three people have been killed during the ongoing “war” in the past 15 days. The police in Bangladesh started countrywide anti-drug operations on May 14, directed by the Inspector General of Police to run an all-out war against the drug dealers.

Human rights activists of the country urged the government to protect the fundamental rights of the people, calling the killings “extrajudicial.” The latest “shootout” incidents on Tuesday night took another 15 lives of alleged drug peddlers throughout the country. The authorities have said they will continue the anti-drug movement until the drug trafficking situation comes under control.

During the press conference Hasina stressed that there were no innocent people who had been victimized in this “war” as the law enforcers’ operations were based on long-term intelligence information. “Show me an incident where an innocent person has been victimized (during the drive). We’ll surely take steps if any innocent person falls victim to the drive,” she said.

PM also stressed the need to continue the anti-narcotic crackdown as drug addiction was a social problem for the country. “Drugs spread like a disease in the society … Nobody will be spared, however influential he may be,” Hasina added. “We must root out the curse of drugs from the society … If some incident takes place during a drive, and if you (the media) highlight it, then shall we stop them (the raids)?”

During the press briefing, she said the security agencies had arrested at least 10,000 people in connection with drug dealing. “Operations will continue until we have control of the situation,” says Asadujjaman Khan, home minister. He said that so far there was no certain time frame to end the “war” on drugs. “We will do all we can. Nothing has been finalized. We will do what we feel is best.”



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