US seeks anti-terrorism tips from Bangladesh

US seeks anti-terrorism tips from Bangladesh

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Dhaka: The United States has sought tips from Bangladesh to deal with global terrorism and extremism, saying many countries could replicate Dhaka’s experience in addressing the issue.
U.S. Under Secretary of States for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman said this during her meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Gono Bhaban here on Friday.
The Prime Minister’s ICT Adviser Sajeeb Wazed Joy and U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Desai Biswal were present during the interaction.Briefing reporters after the meeting, Prime Minister Hasina’s Press Secretary A.K.M. Shameem Chowdhuri said the United States highly appreciated Bangladesh’s success in containing terrorism and militancy as well as its economic and social development.
“We treat the terrorists as terrorists, as they don’t have any border and religion,” the Prime Minister said, adding that Bangladesh is committed not to allow its land to be used for terrorist activities against any country.
Hasina also laid emphasis on stopping illegal arms trafficking across the world to control global terrorism.
About the alleged irregularities in the just concluded three city corporation polls in Dhaka and Chittagong, Sherman said some irregularities in polls have also happened in the United States, but, the government always tries to perform better next time.
She hoped that Bangladesh would continue its efforts to improve its electoral system.
Sheikh Hasina said the military rulers after 1975 had manipulated the country’s electoral system and now Bangladesh had come out largely from that situation.
She also said that the BNP had boycotted the city polls to make the election controversial.
Sherman described the BNP’s decision of boycotting the election as very unfortunate.
The senior American official also hailed the transformation and development of Bangladesh’s ready-made garment sector after Rana Plaza collapse in 2013.
Prime Minister Hasina urged the United States Under Secretary for Political Affairs to raise the price of ready-made garments to further increase the wages of workers.
Pointing out to the recent devastating earthquake in Nepal, Sherman underlined the importance of regional preparedness for disaster management, particularly tackling earthquakes.
The Prime Minister informed the American officials that the international community could use the airports of Bangladesh for the handling of relief materials bound to Nepal.
Sherman highly appreciated Bangladesh’s success in achieving many MDG targets, including the MDG4.
Foreign Secretary M Shahidul Haque, U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Stephens Bloom Bernicat and others, were also present.
Bangladesh and the United States yesterday began a two-day partnership dialogue to advance the robust and growing bilateral relationship and provide it a strategic direction.
“This year, we’ve broadened the discussion to include an emphasis on the environment, health and infectious diseases, and the blue [maritime]economy,” Ambassador Bernicat tweeted soon after the dialogue began.
“A tune-up for our 2 countries as we continue to refine our strategic engagement,” she tweeted.
Sherman and Biswal, who arrived in Dhaka yesterday, will attend the plenary session today.
Sherman is leading the U.S. delegation, while Foreign Secretary Shahidul Haque is leading the Bangladesh team at the talks.
Diplomatic sources told The Daily Star that both sides would discuss the full range of bilateral activities, including development and governance, trade and investment, and security cooperation.
They said the crucial dialogue was taking place at a time when the US, UN, UK, EU, Australia and Canada have expressed their disappointment over the April 28 city corporation elections in Dhaka and Chittagong, which was marred by electoral irregularities and violence.
According to a media note of the US State Department, “She [Sherman] plans to raise issues related to the political situation with the government and other interlocutors.”
The two top US diplomats will also meet top political leaders, senior government officials and civil society members during their stay in Dhaka, said sources.
There will be a joint press conference on the outcome of the dialogue. (ANI) – EIN News

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