Bangladesh’s state of emergency challenged in court

November 24th, 2008 - 8:03 pm ICT by IANS  

Dhaka, Nov 24 (DPA) A Bangladeshi court Monday asked the interim government to justify its state of emergency that allows fundamental civil rights to be suspended.A Dhaka High Court panel is reviewing a citizens’ petition seeking a constitutional ruling on the emergency powers, court officials said.

Civil and political rights in Bangladesh have been suspended since a state of emergency was promulgated in January 2007 in the wake of political turmoil centring on the country’s ninth parliamentary elections.

The army-backed interim government of Fakhruddin Ahmed is planning to hold elections to return the country to democratic rule, now set for Dec 29.

Two amendments to Bangladesh’s constitution empower the government to suspend rights of freedom of movement, assembly and speech.

Four journalists filed the petition with the court Sunday.

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