Govt-AL dialogue set for July 3
Saturday, 21 June 2008

The government has set dialogue with the Awami League for July 3, a party leader said Thursday, reports

Kazi Md Aminul Islam, secretary to the Chief Adviser's Office, has confirmed the schedule by phone to the party, acting AL general secretary Syed Ashraful Islam told reporters after a presidium meeting.

The dialogue will start at 11.00am, Ashraful said.

The presidium meeting was held at acting AL president Zillur Rahman's Gulshan home.

The acting AL general secretary said the AL would hold bilateral and tripartite talks with its allies including the Workers Party of Bangladesh, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (Inu), Gano Azadi League, Ganotantrik Party, Communist Kendra and Samyabadi Dal before the dialogue.

"We will have talks with other groups too, but not with Gano Forum," he said.

The AL presidium Thursday demanded the national election be held first and the state of emergency withdrawn, Ashraful said.

"We want national polls first and a complete withdrawal of emergency rule before the polls."

Referring to Tuesday's meeting between the AL and the European Commission delegation, the AL leader said the EC would consider if observers could be sent in for the polls amid a state of emergency.

Also, the UK high commissioner thinks a free and fair election will not be possible under a state of emergency, Ashraful said.

Asked if the AL would take part in the local polls before the national polls, Ashraful said the decision would be taken later.

Presidium members Syed Sajeda Chowdhury, Abdur Razzak, Tofail Ahmed, Suranjit Sengupta and Motia Chowdhury were present at the meeting.

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