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December 24, 2013 AT 5:59 AM
Opposition leader Begum Khaleda Zia on Tuesday urged Bangladeshis to march to the capital Dhaka at the weekend to protest against what she called "farcical" elections on January 5, and declared: "Democracy is dead." Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her ruling Awami League want to do away with a tradition of introducing a caretaker government to oversee elections. The opposition, led by Bangladesh Nationalist Party head Khaleda, says it will not participate unless an interim government is installed and Hasina steps down. Khaleda, a former premier, urged people to stage the protest on Sunday. "Please come forward to resist the farcical elections on January 5 which the government is staging to steal power," she said.