US Ambassador to Bangladesh Peter Haas has expressed the hope that all sides will sit for ‘dialogue’ without preconditions to de-escalate tensions and find a path toward free, fair and peaceful elections.
“Political violence by any side has no place in democratic elections,” he said after meeting with Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Kazi Habibul Awal at the Election Commission in Dhaka on Tuesday (October 31, 2023).
Ambassador Haas also urged to avoid any action that undermines the democratic election process, including the use of violence, prevent people from exercising their rights to freedom of association, peaceful assembly, and internet access — calling to question the ability to conduct free and fair elections.
Thanking the CEC, the US ambassador said during their meeting, he urged for ensuring transparency and accountability during the EC’s constitutional role towards organising an international election.
He said the process of free and fair elections, as they all know, take place over weeks and months before the actual day of voting when voters cast their ballots.
US Ambassador Haas said the government, political parties, government, law enforcing agencies, voters, civil society, mass media and the Election Commission — all have the responsibilities to make elections free, fair and peaceful.