Political protests continue in Bangladesh over opposition corruption charges

Political protests continue in Bangladesh over opposition corruption charges

Today, opposition rallies will be held across Bangladesh after the government tried opposition leader and former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia

Thousands of students join in a protest over recent traffic accidents that killed a boy and a girl, in Dhaka

Photo: Reuters/Mohammad Ponir Hossain

Today, opposition rallies will be held across Bangladesh after the government tried opposition leader and former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia on corruption charges.

The densely populated country has recently been torn apart by massive student-led protests regarding road safety policy following a fatal bus accident. Though the uproar has been met with a crack-down from the police, the government has also made some concessions. With a general election just months away, this public outcry comes at a critical time for Bangladeshi politics.

Although not the initial cause of the protests, the opposition party has used this public anger to stoke anti-government sentiment. Meanwhile, current Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has not helped her cause with increasingly heavy-handed responses to protests, including the arrests of political opponents such as Ms Khaleda.

Expect the government’s handling of public unrest to push more votes into the grasp of the opposition, although it is unclear how many. Indeed, if momentum builds and public outcry continues, Khaleda’s party may fancy its chances in December’s election.

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