Bangladesh has condemned the killing of Bangladesh-origin Imam and his associate in New York city describing it as a cowardly act on peace-loving people.”We condemn the killing of Bangladeshi origin Imam in NYC…it’s a cowardly act on peace loving people,” State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam tweeted on Sunday.Earlier, US Ambassador in Dhaka Marcia Bernicat mourned the deaths of the two Bangladesh-origin nationals in New York saying violence is not the solution. “We mourn the deaths of Imam Akonjee and Thara Uddin. Violence can never be the solution,” she tweeted on Sunday.Ambassador Bernicat in a separate message said Imam Akonjee was a respected community leader.
“We join all Bangladeshis to condemn the killings of Imam Akonjee and Thara Uddin, and honor what these two men stood for,” she said.The leader of a New York City mosque and an associate were shot dead in a brazen daylight attack as they left afternoon prayers on Saturday.Police said 55-year-old Imam Maulama Akonjee and his 64-year-old associate, Thara Uddin, were shot in the back of the head as they left the Al-Furqan Jame Masjid mosque in the Ozone Park section of Queens shortly before 2 p.m.”Both the Imam and other Bangladeshi national died following the incident,” Shameem Ahsan, Consul General at Bangladesh Consulate in New York, told UNB on Sunday.The diplomat said he visited both the crime spot and Jamaica Hospital where the injured persons were sent right after the incident.Meanwhile, the US Ambassador held a meeting with Foreign Secretary M ShahidulHaque at the latter’s office and discussed various issues, including security one.Talking to reporters after meeting Bernicat said, “I’ve every confidence that police will be able to track down the perpetrators and bring them to justice.”Responding to a question on nature of attacks on Bangladesh origin nationals in New York, the diplomat said police are looking at every possibility. “Certainly, police have not ruled out (any possibility). We have to wait and see.”Responding to another question, Bernicat said they are looking to finalise a date for security dialogue between Bangladesh and the US which will be held in Dhaka.She said counterterrorism and other security issues will be discussed during the security dialogue.