“There is enough scope for politics, of articulating views and opinions in Bangladesh and there is no doubt about it,” Hasina told the Voice of the America’s Bangla service in an interview.
The full audio of the interview, taken during Hasina’s visit to the US recently, is available on the Voice of America website.
“We have not taken away anybody’s freedom of speech. Everyone is holding meetings and rallies, they are speaking what they want,” she told the VOA, pointing to the BNP’s participation in recent local polls despite boycotting the 2014 national election.
The prime minister spoke of involving the people in the fight against terror and highlighted many development initiatives of her government, describing the global economic downturn as major challenge for Bangladesh.
Reacting to a VOA question on the war crimes trials, Hasina said, “Those who made these war criminals ministers in their Cabinet should also be brought to justice.’
“There are those who seized power illegally and now trying to come to power by fire-bombing buses and killing innocents to disrupt elections,” she said.
“They can’t give up their hunger for power and they are the ones who are behind provoking the forces of terror,” said the prime minister.
Hasina said her government had full faith in the people and was ready to combat any challenge that might come its way.