Bangladesh will not accept any ‘negative reaction’ from any country in the world on war crimes trial, said State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam on Monday.“…because Bangladesh and its 16 crore people are not in a position to accept any such negative remark from any country of the world, let alone Pakistan,” he told reporters at his office shortly after the government formally lodged a strongly-worded protest with Pakistan.
The State Minister, however, said a single incident cannot be the ‘benchmark’ for severing diplomatic ties or rebuilding relations with a particular country.
“You’ll see many countries that still maintain diplomatic relations despite having being engaged in warlike situations,” he said apparently ruling out any possibility of severing diplomatic ties with Pakistan as Ganajagaran Manch demanded severing relations with Pakistan.
Shahriar, however, said he realises the feelings of Ganajagaran Manch and the young generation.
Responding to another question, the State Minister said there is no plan to downsize Bangladesh’s diplomatic presence in Pakistan following the latest development between the two countries.
Shahriar said the government is frustrated to see Pakistan’s statement as Bangladesh expected that this time no country and organisations will make negative comments on war criminals’ executions. “No country except Pakistan reacted this time.”
Referring to a news story based on US State Department’s reaction carried by a foreign news agency, he said the report was not based on facts.
He said Pakistan unnecessarily reacted which is a clear departure from diplomatic norms.
Turning to Pakistan National Assembly and Punjab Provincial Assembly’s resolutions over the execution of war criminal Quader Mollah, the State Minister said Pakistan did not convey it to Bangladesh government realising that they were not doing right thing.
“It made us hopeful that Pakistan will never interfere in our internal affairs,” he said adding that Pakistan’s statement, this time too, frustrated them.
Responding to another question, Shahriar said Pakistan has acted going beyond diplomatic etiquette. “That’s why we summoned the Pakistan High Commissioner to explain our stance in this regard. He (envoy) will surely convey it to his government.”
Earlier, the government formally lodged a strongly-worded protest with Pakistan for its remarks over Sunday’s execution of two war criminals who sided with the Pakistan occupation forces committing atrocities against pro-liberation people.
Pakistani High Commissioner in Dhaka Shuja Alam who was summoned on Sunday evening, met acting Foreign Secretary Mizanur Rahman on Monday at state guesthouse Padma.
Mizanur Rahman, also Secretary (Bilateral and Consular), formally handed over a protest note (aide memoire) to the envoy. The meeting continued till 3 pm from 2:30pm.