With whom dialogue will take place, FM wants to know

The Report Desk

Published: November 14, 2023, 06:24 PM

With whom dialogue will take place, FM wants to know

Bangladeshi Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen Addressing a Programme. Collected Photo

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen on Tuesday said the government does not have reservation over holding dialogue but the question is with whom.

Talking to reporters, Momen said Bangladesh Awami League always believes in democratic process and they want continuation of this process.

"If there is necessity of dialogue to keep democratic journey uninterrupted, we will do that. But the question  is with whom this dialogue will take place," he said.

The Foreign Minister made the remarks when his attention was drawn about Washington’s desire to have dialogue among Awami League, BNP and Jatiya Party.

"We are a very free country, we have freedom of media and opinion. You can say whatever you wish to say. We are a very pragmatic country. We try to rectify if there are good suggestions," Momen said.

He also referred to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s remarks on US suggestions regarding political dialogue ahead of the next national election.

Momen also suggested the journalists to ask the question to the US side to know what they want.

Responding to a question on India‍‍`s recent remarks, the Foreign Minister said India is big democratic country and they have mature government and Bangladesh has no disagreement with what India says.

The Election Commission is taking preparations to hold the next national election by January next year and is likely to announce polls schedules soon.

The United States has said they support "free and fair" elections in Bangladesh.

"We think the future of the Bangladeshi government should be determined by its people," US Department of State Spokesperson Matthew Miller told reporters at a regular media briefing on Monday when a reporter wanted why must the U.S. government discuss the Bangladesh issue with India.

Miller said the United States does not take a side in Bangladeshi elections.

"We do not support one political party over the other. We support free and fair elections," he added.

Miller said, "I welcome the attempts by various reporters to draw me into internal Bangladeshi political matters, and I’m going to continue to refrain from doing so."

On Monday, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam reiterated that the next election will be held as per the constitution, no matter who is doing what.

He said election is an internal matter of the people of Bangladesh and the election will be held under the constitution and relevant laws.

Asked about reported letter to three major political parties by US Assistant Secretary Donald Lu, he said the Spokesperson of the concerned parties will know as they represent the government while sitting inside the MoFA.

Earlier, Law Minister Anisul Huq conveyed to the UN Human Rights Council that opposition party BNP’s demand for holding the next national election under a caretaker government is “completely unconstitutional and illegal.”

Mentioning Bangladesh’s independent Election Commission, he said the government is committed to hold the next national election in a “free, fair and peaceful” manner with the participation of people.

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