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Want to create new chapter in relations: FM says after talks with US delegation

Published : Sunday, 25 February, 2024 at 9:44 PM  Count : 482

Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud welcomes US delegation comprising Eileen Laubacher, Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for South Asia, US National Security Council (NSC); Michael Schiffer, USAID Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Asia; and Afreen Akhter, US Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Dhaka on Sunday

Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud welcomes US delegation comprising Eileen Laubacher, Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for South Asia, US National Security Council (NSC); Michael Schiffer, USAID Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Asia; and Afreen Akhter, US Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Dhaka on Sunday

Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud on Sunday said that the United States has expressed willingness to work with Bangladesh to create a new chapter in their relations.

"There is willingness from both sides. Together, we want to create a new chapter in our relations," he told reporters after his meeting with the visiting US delegation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

The foreign minister also said the letter sent by US President Joe Biden to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is important to take forward the relations between the two countries.

Eileen Laubacher, Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for South Asia, US National Security Council (NSC); Michael Schiffer, USAID Assistant Administrator, Bureau for Asia; and Afreen Akhter, US Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia, are on a three-day visit to Bangladesh. 

"It's a pleasure for us to talk about our shared priorities and ways for us to cooperating together in the future," Eileen Laubacher told reporters in her very brief remarks. 
She also said they value the relations with Bangladesh.

"We discussed with the Foreign Minister how our two countries can work on mutual interests, including economic development, security, refugees, climate, labor, and trade," said the US Embassy in a separate message after the meeting. 

Bangladesh is an important partner in the Indo-Pacific region, it said.

Responding to a question regarding withdrawal of sanctions on RAB, the Foreign Minister said the US side has given five observations which Bangladesh will follow up.

He said the current situation in Myanmar has posed a security threat for Bangladesh and the region. "We discussed this issue."

Foreign Minister Hasan said they urged the US to ensure a ceasefire in Gaza. 

Regarding Rashed Chowdhury, one of the killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman who took shelter in the United States, Hasan said they raised the issue with the US delegation to send him back to Bangladesh. The US side has said the issue is pending with the US Justice Department.

The three US officials, according to the US side, are visiting to discuss with the government of Bangladesh ways to "strengthen diplomatic ties, address challenges, and promote a shared vision for the advancement of mutual interests in the Indo-Pacific region." 

They also met Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, civil society representatives, labour leaders, youth activists and those engaged in developing a free and uncensored media

END/UNB/SZA






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