Dhaka, Jan 20: Bangladesh Prime minister Sheikh Hasina has accused the “desperate” opposition of “plotting” against her government after the army foiled a coup plot by some “fanatic” serving and retired military officers.
Criticising Khaleda Zia-led Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), the ruling Awami League president said the opposition was plotting against her government.
“They are desperate to spoil the democratic process on the pretext of movement. They are threatening the government to protect the war criminals,” bdnews24 quoted Hasina as saying.
Zia is pressing Hasina to reinstate the caretaker government system to oversee elections, scrapped last year by the government through a constitution amendment in line with a Supreme Court verdict.
But Hasina warned, “making threats will not help much.
The government will not bow before their threats.” Hasina said hundreds of people had to die in the politics of coups and murder.
“I don't want to hear mothers crying [over losing their children]. I want democracy and peace,” she said during a meeting with her party's Khagrachhari district unit leaders at at her official residence in the city.
Her remarks came soon after the Bangladesh Army yesterday said, “A band of fanatic officers had been trying to oust the politically established government. Their attempt has been foiled.”
The report comes as the government begins trial against alleged mastermind of war crimes suspect and former Jamaat-e-Islami chief Ghulam Azam and other top leaders of the party, which is a crucial ally of the main opposition BNP.
Hasina's government, which came to power in early 2009, has faced repeated threats from hardline groups.
Bangladesh has a long history of coups and counter coups. The country was under direct or pseudo military rules for over a decade, since August 15, 1975, when the country's founding leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was assassinated along with most of his family members.
Hasina said after the assassination of the father of the nation in 1975, elements in the army had staged around 18 to 19 coups, in which thousands of people had to die, Daily Star reported.
“Who are the beneficiary of the politics of killings and coups?” questioned Hasina.
It is mainly the armed forces officers and soldiers who were killed in those coups, said Hasina.