Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Switzerland, Liechtenstein


Universal Periodic Review Working Group – 16th Session
Universal Periodic Review of Bangladesh
29 April 2013


Australia welcomes the Foreign Minister of Bangladesh and thanks her for her thoughtful presentation. We join others in expressing our condolences on the tragedy in Dhaka.

Australia welcomes the Government of Bangladesh’s stated commitment to implementing the Chittagong Hills Tracts Peace Accord. Australia recommends the full implementation of the Chittagong Hill Tracts Peace Accord.

We are concerned at the loss of life, injuries and damage to religious sites and private property in the most recent confrontations and demonstrations in Bangladesh. We note with concern ongoing tensions over the status of disadvantaged minority groups in parts of Bangladesh. Australia welcomes the statements by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina condemning communal violence and targeting of religious and ethnic minorities, but calls on all political leaders and groups in Bangladesh to exercise and advocate restraint, tolerance and the peaceful settlement of disputes. Australia further calls on the Government of Bangladesh to continue to allow for the provision of essential humanitarian assistance to Rohingya refugees.

Australia remains concerned that the death penalty continues to be imposed in Bangladesh and recommends that Bangladesh establish a moratorium on the death penalty, as a first step towards complete abolition of this practice and accession to the Second Optional Protocol of the ICCPR.

Australia welcomes Bangladesh’s creation of the National Women’s Advancement Policy since its last UPR. Australia recommends that Bangladesh take steps to strengthen the implementation of this policy, including by removing its reservations to the Convention on the Eradication of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).