DHAKA (AFP) - Bangladesh's army-backed government has lifted a state of emergency, in place for almost two years, as part of preparations to restore democracy in December 29 elections, the country's police chief said Wednesday. Inspector-General of Police Nur Muhammad confirmed to AFP that a presidential order to lift the emergency at one minute past midnight on Wednesday had been fulfilled. "There is no emergency after one minute past midnight (18:01 GMT, Tuesday)," Mohammad said. The move repeals laws that have been in place since the emergency was imposed on January 11, 2007, after months of violent nationwide political strikes brought the country to a standstill.