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Friday, February 20, 2015, Falgun 8, 1421 BS, Robi-Us-Sani 30, 1436 Hijr

UN chief urges govt to engage oppn for long-term stability
Observer Online Desk
Published : Friday, 20 February, 2015,  Time : 10:35 AM,  View Count : 57
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has encouraged the government of Bangladesh to seek concrete ways to deescalate the situation, and engage constructively the opposition for the long-term stability and development of the country.

Ban Ki-moon came up with the remarks at a meeting with Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali at the US State Department on the sidelines of the 'White House Summit to Counter Violent Extremism'.

During the meeting, they discussed cooperation between the United Nations and the government of Bangladesh, according to a UN official.

The Secretary-General also expressed his concern over the loss of lives and political violence that have occurred in Bangladesh since the beginning of 2015.

According to Foreign Ministry here, Mahmood Ali told Ban Ki-moon that the government remains committed to ensuring the human rights and security of innocent civilians who are being targeted by the terrorist acts being committed by the BNP-Jamaat alliance, and remains open to account for the lawful measures taken to this effect.

The UN Secretary General shared his concerns over the ongoing violence in Bangladesh.

He said that the government has the responsibility to protect people in general from violence, and that all political parties should exercise their political rights upholding the established democratic norms and principles.

Mahmood Ali briefed the UN Secretary General about the various initiatives taken by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to create an enabling environment for an inclusive and participatory democratic process in the country.

He regretted that the BNP leadership persistently rebuffed the government's overtures, and instead chose the path of violence and terrorist methods at the expense of innocent lives.

The UN Secretary General assured the Foreign Minister of the UN's continued engagement with strengthening the democratic and development process in Bangladesh.

He stressed that the UN would continue to have dialogues with the government to understand the evolving political situation.

He also thanked Bangladesh for its contributions to the work of the United Nations, particularly to peacekeeping operations.

The Foreign Minister expressed his interest in having further discussions soon with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights ZeidRa'ad Al-Hussein, who was present at the meeting.

Bangladesh Ambassador to the US Mohammad Ziauddin and Foreign Secretary M Shahidul Haque accompanied the Foreign Minister at the meeting.

The UN Secretary General spoke at the Opening Session of the White House Summit, and shared the UN plans to support the global initiatives to counter violent extremism leading to terrorism.


Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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