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Volume 401: debated on Tuesday 18 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assessment he has made of human rights in Bangladesh; and if he will make a statement. [103236]

Our High Commission in Dhaka monitors closely the regrettably frequent reports of human rights abuses in Bangladesh. We were concerned by reports of mistreatment of detainees, including deaths following detention, associated with the recent law and order drive, "Operation Clean Heart", and urged the Bangladesh Government to follow the due process of law in all cases. We regularly take up human rights issues with the Bangladesh Government, calling for all allegations of human rights abuses to be fully investigated and for perpetrators to be brought to justice.