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BD urges all to show restraint

FE REPORT | November 04, 2020 00:00:00

Bangladesh on Tuesday urged both its people and France to show restraint in dealing with religious sentiment and not to link religion with trade.

Referring to the recent act of violence in France over religious issue, Bangladesh foreign secretary Masud Bin Momen noted that Bangladesh does not support any kind of religious violence.

"At the same time, we feel that in the name of freedom of speech, none should hurt religious sentiment of others," Mr Masud said while briefing the members of the Diplomatic Correspondents Association of Bangladesh (DCAB).

In regard to the call for banning Bangladeshi products by some French lawmakers, the foreign secretary said this call might be made as a political rhetoric to appease their respective constituencies.

When his attention was drawn to the call for boycotting French products by a section of religious group in Bangladesh, he said trade should not be linked to religion.

Mr Masud observed that the change of command in the White House would not affect the US-Bangladesh ties.

"The policy of the State Department with regard to Bangladesh is not dependent on any particular person."

But Bangladesh will continue to urge the USA to provide the trade facilities which the country got from the USA previously, he added. On Rohingya issue, he said the government plans to relocate over 300 Rohingya families to Bhasanchar this month.

The secretary also expressed the hope that a new diplomatic move will be initiated to start repatriation after the national elections of Myanmar this month.

Responding to a question, Mr Masud said the ministry usually takes steps as per the law when it gets reports on violence or abuse against any female Bangladeshi workers in the Middle East. But he felt that the guardians should remain cautious about the authenticity of the recruiting agencies so that their daughters could avoid cheating.

In reply to another question, he said Bangladesh would be a part of the US-led Indo-Pacific Strategy if it would provide the opportunity of economic development.

He also pointed out that Bangladesh was not biased either to China or India. "We have good ties with both the countries."

The foreign secretary mentioned how the ministry faces the Covid-19 challenge which was totally new to the country.

Deportation of workers, bringing back the Bangladeshis stranded abroad and ensuring proper scrutiny at the airports were the major challenges during the pandemic, which according to him, was handled satisfactorily.

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