Bangladesh, UK FMs discuss global security challenges
26 November 2015, Nirapad News: The UK foreign minister Philip Hammond and his Bangladesh counterpart AH Mahmood Ali held a meeting at the sidelines of Commonwealth Foreign Ministers’ meeting in Malta on Wednesday (November 25) afternoon.
The two ministers discussed issues relating to international peace and security, terrorism and violent extremism and expressed willingness to intensify cooperation in combating them, says a press release issued by Bangladesh foreign ministry on Thursday.
Hammond is the second UK minister meeting Mahmood Ali in as many days. Day before yesterday, the British State Minister for Trade and Investment called on him.
The UK foreign minister also expressed his deep concern at the rise of violent extremism in various parts of the world in recent times.
He particularly mentioned that IS and Al-Qaeda were aspiring to operate beyond their traditional grounds, adding that all countries had to be vigilant against this common threat.
In this regard, the UK minister appreciated the ‘zero tolerance’ policy of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s government.
Mahmood Ali assured his British counterpart that the overall security situation in Bangladesh was good, stating that the few recent incidents were the acts of BNP-Jamaat alliances aimed at destabilizing the country and maligning the growing positive image of the country at a time when Bangladesh was fast progressing under the astute leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
He informed Hammond that on the basis of those apprehended and the intelligence gathered, it was evident that the crimes were committed by local extremists and no external connections could be found.
He reassured that the government had undertaken stringent measures to guarantee safety and security of its people as well as the foreign nationals living in the country.
The UK minister offered Bangladesh minister to extend necessary support to enhance capacities in these areas.
Mahmood Ali invited his UK counterpart to visit Bangladesh at his convenience which he readily accepted.
Earlier Bangladesh FM took part in the first day of the customary pre-CHOGM Commonwealth Foreign Ministers’ meeting.
The ministers deliberated on development issues such as the SDGs and explored ways of implementing SDGs.
They also discussed initiatives undertaken for the LDCs and small states emphasizing on the need for capacity building and rules based trade.
The meeting also discussed proposals of creating ‘Commonwealth Advantage’ by easing movement of group’s citizens across the borders of its member states.
Meanwhile, a five-member delegation led by the state minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroze Chumki also attended the three-day Commonwealth Women’s Forum and showcased Bangladesh’s progress and best practices in women empowerment.
In addition, two members of FM’s delegation-the CEO, Public Private Partnership Authority and Executive Member of the Board of Investment attended the second day’s events of the Commonwealth Business Forum where they had trade and investment related meetings with a number of private sector enterprises.