Bangladesh has reacted to an article published by The Economist saying the media outlet ‘incorrectly characterised’ Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her government as being ‘pro-Muslim’.
“The Prime Minister is a Muslim, but she and her government are proudly secular and endorse the effort to bring Muslim madrassa students into the country’s tolerant, democratic mainstream,” the Foreign Ministry said here on Tuesday quoting the text of the reaction.
The Economist published an article headline ‘Sheikh Hasina’s folly’ on June 3 and later the media outlet published a rejoinder sent by the Bangladesh High Commissioner in London.
“Nor has she pursued a dogged vendetta against a political rival. Bangladesh is committed to the rule of law. When evidence arises that individuals are responsible for vicious crimes such as fire-bombings, law-enforcement officials charge them with those crimes,” the text reads.
Bangladesh says the governing Awami League was elected in 2014 in a fair and open election. “BNP boycotted that election to try to rob it of legitimacy, rebuffing numerous attempts by the prime minister to persuade BNP to participate. The BNP cannot both boycott an election and declare it to be invalid because it didn’t participate.”
It said, “You also made the false assertion that the government is trying to dismember Jamaat-e-Islami. Bangladesh’s war-crimes tribunal tried and convicted people for atrocities they had committed during Bangladesh’s war of liberation from Pakistan in 1971, regardless of their political position. That some of those people who were convicted were affiliated with the Jamaat party is beside the point. No one is above the law.”