Tensions at the Indo-Bangladesh border; HRW: Government has failed to check violations by the Army; Bangladesh to consider gas imports from Myanmar
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  • Tensions at the Indo-Bangladesh border rose with the Border Security Force (BSF) and the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) exchanging fire on January 31 over the kidnapping of an Indian border guard by Bangladeshi smugglers on the previous day1. A meeting between both the sides however failed to diffuse the situation as BDR later charged the BSF with firing at a group of Bangladeshi cattle traders as well as for killing a Bangladeshi trader on February 3.

    In domestic developments, it was reported that Bangladesh's main political parties, the Awami League and the Bangladesh National Party (BNP) have managed to strike an informal deal to join forces in order to press the army-backed interim government to hold elections earlier than scheduled, latest by July 20082.

    The Special Assistant for Power and Energy Ministry, Dr. M. Tamim on February 3 stated that Bangladesh would consider gas import from Myanmar. Tamim noted that the country had either to go in for gas imports or undertake more explorations to meet a growing demand for the fossil fuel3.

    Among other developments, Dhaka rejected the report of the Human Rights Watch released on January 31, which charged that the government had failed to keep the military from committing major violations, especially after the declaration of emergency in January 20074.