2001 Mission Report: Bangladesh Parliamentary Election
This 8fh Parliamentary Election was rated more disturbing than the previous elections in 1996 with reports of violence had intensified from about 500 reports of election-related killings and injuries to more than 2000 reports within a month toward the polling day. Such an increase was believed to be a result of the increasing polarization of political parties supporters and the diminished tolerance for different political opinions, which left no space for any reconciliation. Interestingly, Bangladesh's ordinary people seemed to have determined that they had suffered enough from intimidation and physical violence during the campaign period. With a high voter turnout of more than 70 percent on polling day, this could be a message sent to the political thugs that they were not afraid anymore.