The UPR of the UN Human Rights Council reviews the human rights records of all member states of the organization once every four years. The UPR reviewed Bangladesh’s human rights record in 2009, 2013 and 2018.
Information provided by Amnesty for Bangladesh’s UPR assessed the implementation of earlier recommendations, the statement said. They expressed concern about freedom of expression, right to peaceful assembly including to organize, other human rights (such as disappearances, extrajudicial killings, minority rights, death penalty, refugee rights).
Freedom of expression
Bangladesh’s last UPR took place in May 2018, Amnesty said in a statement. The Bangladesh government then accepted the recommendation to protect freedom of expression. But the country has steadily undermined this right over the past five years. This includes the reckless reformation of various laws and the use of law as a weapon. The new Cyber Security Act 2023 retains the stringent features of the earlier Digital Security Act.
Amnesty said the Bangladesh government should bring the new cyber security law into line with international human rights law. At the same time, it should be ensured that this law is not used against human rights activists, critics, dissidents.
Amnesty said those detained for exercising their human rights, including freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, should be immediately and unconditionally released ahead of next January’s national elections.