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Bangladesh - January 28, 2024

Bangladesh’s security forces remain alert along Myanmar border

Staff Correspondent: Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud yesterday said Bangladesh’s security forces along the Myanmar border remain alert amid growing tensions in the neighbouring country.
He said tensions prevailed in Myanmar with brief pauses and Bangladesh forces have remained alert from much earlier.

Talking to reporters at the state guesthouse Padma, the foreign minister said such a tense situation will certainly have a negative impact on the efforts to repatriate Rohingyas to their place of origin in Myanmar.
But, he added, the Myanmar government will feel compelled to take back their nationals if the international community puts pressure on them. “We always seek the international community’s cooperation,” he said.
During his meeting with the visiting British cross-party parliamentary delegation, the foreign minister discussed the Rohingya repatriation issue.
“Repatriation of the Rohingyas is the only solution. That is the durable and permanent solution. That is what I told them and they agreed with me,” Hasan said.
The foreign minister mentioned that there are multiple issues concerning security and environment, and the Rohingya camps might become a breeding ground for militancy. “We are overburdened. We provided them shelter on humanitarian grounds.”
On the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordering Israel to take steps to prevent acts of genocide in Gaza, he said, “We welcome it. We believe this verdict will help stop genocide and crimes against humanity. Bangladesh stands ready to support South Africa
British Delegation Lauds PM’s Development Efforts
Regarding his meeting with the British delegation, he said it was a courtesy meeting and they came to deepen and improve relations with Bangladesh and its parliament.
They highly appreciated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s development efforts that changed the country over the last 10 years.
The foreign minister said he requested the delegation members for enhanced private investment in Bangladesh, especially from the Bangladeshi diaspora.
He said expatriate Bangladeshis have the capacity to invest here in the areas of ICT, agriculture and other potential areas. “We are in the process of mechanization of the agriculture sector.”
The British parliamentary delegation is scheduled to call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Gonobhaban on January 28.
This is the first parliamentary visit from the UK since general elections were held in Bangladesh earlier this month, said the Bangladesh High Commission in London.
The five-member parliamentary delegation led by Paul Scully MP, former Conservative Minister for Tech and Digital Economy also comprises three labour MPs namely Virendra Sharma MP, Vice Chair of All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Bangladesh and Chair of APPG on Indo-British, Neil Coyle MP, Member of UK House of Commons Select Committee on Foreign Affairs, Andrew Western MP, Opposition Whip at the House of Commons and Dominic Moffitt, Senior Parliamentary Assistant at House of Commons.
The delegation is accompanied by Zillur Hussain MBE, Advisor for The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust and Strategic Adviser for CWEIC and Dr Ivelina Banyalieva, CEO of Connect.
They will visit Tungipara to pay respects to Father of the Nation of Bangladesh, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at his Mausoleum.
This would be the first time a British parliamentary delegation is visiting the Bangabandhu Mausoleum at Tungipara.
During the visit, the delegation is also scheduled to call on State Minister for Commerce Ahsanul Islam to discuss ways to further strengthen Bangladesh-UK trade, economic and Indo-Pacific partnership.
The delegation will also have a meeting with the business leaders of Bangladesh followed by a visit to a green apparel factory.
The delegation will be traveling to Sylhet to visit some of leading charities established by the British-Bangladeshis in the UK.
On January 30, the delegation will be visiting the Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar in reaffirmation of their support to Bangladesh’s generous hosting of the persecuted Rohingyas from Myanmar and resolution of the protracted Rohingya crisis.
Bangladesh High Commission in London coordinated the visit with the British Parliamentarians and the Commonwealth business delegation by Connect.
The delegation is scheduled to depart for London on January 31.

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