News World Polls open in violence-hit Bangladesh
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Polls open in violence-hit Bangladesh

Bangladeshi election officials and policemen
A security operation has been mounted in Bangladesh as polls open against a backdrop of violence.
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Voting has begun in a Bangladesh general election that has been plagued by deadly violence and is being boycotted by the main opposition party.

“The polls opened across the country at 8am (1300 AEDT),” said election commission spokesman S.M. Asaduzzaman.

The turnout is expected to be poor and AFP correspondents in the capital Dhaka said there was no sign of queues outside polling stations when they opened. 

About 150 people have died since October when the opposition launched a campaign designed to derail the election, and there were fresh reports of deaths on Saturday night.

Police said that a polling officer was beaten to death in the northern district of Thakurgaon on Saturday night, while a truck driver died of burn injuries after his vehicle was firebombed on Friday by opposition activists.