Update February 23, 2015

Dhaka 9-22 am, 27-September, 2020

Kerry to visit BD soon: Ministry

Sumel Sarker

kerry

US Secretary of State John Kerry

23 February 2015, Nirapad News: US Secretary of State John Kerry will soon visit Bangladesh to take forward the Dhaka-Washington ties to a newer height, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here.

On February 19, Foreign Minister Mahmood Ali had a meeting with Kerry at the US Department of State and discussed on a wide range of Bangladesh-US bilateral relations.

When the Foreign Minister invited his counterpart to visit Bangladesh, John Kerry responded ‘very positively’ and said he would love to take the visit at the ‘earliest opportunity’, said an official here. However, the time and date of the visit have not been fixed yet.

“While Secretary Kerry has said he would like to visit Bangladesh, we know of no plan at this time,” US Embassy Spokesperson Monica L Shie told on Sunday.

The US noted Bangladesh’s increasing strategic importance in the region and underscored the need to protect Bangladesh’s fundamental freedoms.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali on Sunday talked to a small team of reporters and discussed the outcome of his meeting with John Kerry.

He also reportedly told the journalists that the time and date of the visit have not been fixed yet, but he (Kerry) is coming. If the visit takes place, it will be Kerry’s first visit to Bangladesh as former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Bangladesh during her tenure.

They expressed their satisfaction at the current level of cooperation and acknowledged that the bilateral relation is expanding from strength to strength.

During his meeting with Mahmood Ali, Kerry applauded Bangladesh for its huge success in the socio-economic fields and said that the US would be happy to continue expanding its cooperation with Bangladesh.

The two leaders agreed that violence has no space in a democracy, and condemned the mindless violence and extremism in the name of ideology or political expression.

They agreed to work together on a number of global issues, inter alia, climate change, countering violent extremism, terrorism, peacekeeping, human security, disaster preparedness etc. John Kerry expressed deep interest to work with Bangladesh in fighting climate change.

The Foreign Minister requested Kerry to expedite repatriation of Rashed Chowdhury, one of the convicted killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who is reportedly hiding in the USA.

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