Photographers gathered at University of Dhaka, holding up their cameras in protest and demanding the immediate release of photographer Shahidul Alam. 16 October, 2018. Editorial credit: Sk Hasan Ali /


Bangladesh's ruling Awami League (AL) has consolidated political power through sustained harassment of the opposition and those perceived to be allied with it, as well as of critical media and voices in civil society. Corruption is a serious problem, and anticorruption efforts have been weakened by politicized enforcement. Due process guarantees are poorly upheld and security forces carry out a range of human right abuses with near impunity. The threat posed by Islamist extremists has receded since 2016, when the government enacted a harsh crackdown that saw the arrest of some 15,000 people.

FIW Hong Kong hero photo

Freedom in the World — Bangladesh Country Report

Bangladesh is rated Partly Free in Freedom in the World, Freedom House's annual study of political rights and civil liberties worldwide.

A young woman wearing a protective mask looks at her smartphone while passing by a grafitti representing two big watching eyes in Berlin, Germany on April 1, 2020. Illustrative Editorial (Photo by Emmanuele Contini/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Freedom on the Net — Bangladesh Country Report

Bangladesh is rated Partly Free in Freedom on the Net, Freedom House's comprehensive study of internet freedom around the globe.