UN Warning to Bangladesh on Digital Security Law

Volker Türk, United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights, said in a statement released by the Commissioner, “I am concerned that the Digital Security Law is being used across Bangladesh to arrest, harass, intimidate and silence critical voices of journalists and human rights defenders.” used the phrase.

Referring to the background of the law, the statement said that more than 2,000 lawsuits were filed under the “brutal” digital law, which came into effect on October 1, 2018.

Major irregularities under the law, including prefilling ballot papers, intimidation and harassment of opposition politicians and critics of the Awami League government, marred the elections, the statement said.


Authorities were summoned

Underlining the controversial articles of the law, Türk called on the authorities to revise the law in accordance with the requirements of international human rights law.

Expressing concern over the arrest of journalist Shams Zaman, who works for the country’s largest daily newspaper Prothom Alo, on March 29, the statement said, “(Zaman) was detained and his laptop, phone and other equipment were confiscated during a search of his home. His bail request was denied. ” it was said.

Türk also called for the establishment of an independent judicial committee to examine all cases covered by the law.

The human rights organization “Ain o Salish Kendra” (ASK) shared the information that in the last three months of 2023, at least 56 journalists from different media outlets across the country were subjected to torture, harassment, threats or lawsuits.

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