Polls open in violence-plagued Bangladesh election
Bangladeshi police officials carry ballot boxes on the eve of general election, in Dhaka, on January 4, 2014
"The polls opened across the country at 8:00 am (0200 GMT)," said election commission spokesman S.M. Asaduzzaman.
Turnout is expected to be low and AFP correspondents in the capital Dhaka said there was no sign of queues outside polling stations when they opened.
Around 150 people have died since the opposition launched a campaign designed to derail the election in October and there were fresh reports of deaths overnight.
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 his burn injuries after his vehicle was firebombed on Friday by opposition activists.
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