Diplomats violate norms by visiting candidates’ homes: Hasan


Chattogram, Jan 31: Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud on Friday said foreign diplomats have violated the diplomatic norms by visiting the residences of candidates of local government elections.“Ahead of the local government elections (Dhaka city polls), the diplomats visited the homes of candidates, which was not fair at all. Visiting the homes of the candidates to show sympathy for them is not a diplomatic job. I think the diplomatic norms were violated in this regard,” he told reports on the sidelines of a function at Hathazari upazila in Chattogram.

Hasan, also Awami League joint general secretary, said the diplomats are making frequent comments on the Dhaka city elections, which is a violation of the diplomatic norms.

When general elections or local government elections are held in India or other countries, the foreign diplomats do not make any comment on the elections, he added.

Replying to a question, Dr Hasan said: “We always notice that when any election approaches in our country, foreign diplomats show much interest in it. Some of us are responsible for that…when anything happens in the country, BNP places allegations, calling upon the diplomats.”

BNP should lodge its allegations before the country’s people and voters but the party does so to the foreign diplomats, which is not righteous, he added.

The information minister said the Election Commission (EC) has issued election observer cards to many officials of different embassies and missions. Of them, 28 officials are Bangladeshis, he added.

“The EC has given an explanation on why it issued the cards to the officials working in different embassies and missions in Dhaka. But I personally think that this explanation is not acceptable,” Hasan said, adding that the EC would be more careful in this regard.

He said no foreign observer arrived in Dhaka so far to monitor the Dhaka City elections.