• Sunday, Oct 24, 2021
  • Last Update : 04:43 pm

Mia Seppo: UN to provide electoral assistance to Bangladesh if requested

  • Published at 04:16 pm September 19th, 2021
Mia Seppo, UN resident coordinator in Bangladesh
UN resident coordinator in Bangladesh Mia Seppo Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

UN is concerned about shrinking civic space

UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh Mia Seppo on Sunday said the United Nations (UN) will provide electoral assistance to Bangladesh only if there is any request on that particular front.

“The UN doesn’t provide electoral assistance unless we’re asked to provide,” she said, adding that the whole process depends on requests for electoral assistance but the UN does not just step in on its own.

UNRC Mia said the UN stands ready to support under the framework of cooperation if there is any request forthcoming.

The UN Resident Coordinator was responding to questions at “DCAB Talk” organised by the Diplomatic Correspondents Association, Bangladesh (DCAB) at the Foreign Service Academy.

DCAB President Pantho Rahaman and its General Secretary AKM Moinuddin also spoke at the “DCAB Talk” where UNRC Mia shared UN views on Rohingya and Afghanistan crises, issues related to Bhasan Char, climate change, sustainable and inclusive Covid recovery, Digital Security Act (DSA), gender issues and cooperation framework.

The UNRC said there are some areas where the UN is “concerned” about and some of them applicable for many countries.

“We’re concerned about increasing violence against women, we’re concerned about growing inequalities – it’s a global concern. We’re also concerned about signs of shrinking civic space. Again it’s a global concern,” Mia said, adding that they hope that the review of the DSA will indeed improve that situation in Bangladesh.


Also Read - Information Minister: No point in dreaming of a caretaker government


Globally at the moment, she said, there is a big concern around shrinking civic space and that applies to so many countries.

“I don’t think for any country that aspires to be a democracy that helps it. We obviously encourage protecting the civic space,” Mia said, mentioning that it should be part of all the efforts to make sure Covid recovery is inclusive.

She said they have to recognise that protecting human rights is very much “collective responsibility” and the media have a responsibility in making sure that stories do not stigmatize the victims but spot issues of concern by protecting the privacy of the victims.

Mia said a review of the DSA is one of the UPR (Universal Periodic Review (UPR) recommendations that actually was supported by Bangladesh making sure that the law is compliant with the international human rights standard.


Also Read - Elections to 161 UPs, 9 municipalities Monday


She mentioned that they have had some good discussions with the Law Minister in particular and the UN stands ready to help on that front to avoid its misuse.

The UN official said Covid-19 pandemic has amplified the challenges of inequality, achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and gender disparity.

As Bangladesh graduated from the LDC status, it will have opportunities but also face the challenges of inequality, which needs to be addressed very effectively, Mia said.

She said there is no development without peace and no peace without development; and sustaining peace is a continuous process.

Mia said national and social cohesion must be sensitively managed to strengthen relationships of trust among the Bangladeshis.

She said the media's action and reporting can engender either social cohesion or mistrust and divisions among communities and people. “Media reports can give a rise to resentment, suspicion and conspiracy theories.”

54
Facebook 51
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail