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Dhaka Tribune

Bangladesh seeking $4.32bn wartime equitable share from Pakistan

Update : 19 Nov 2015, 06:59 PM

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali has told the parliament that the incumbent government has been continuing its diplomatic efforts to realise Bangladesh’s equitable share from Pakistan.

“Bangladesh has been repeatedly pressing its demand for equitable share in properties worth about $4.32 billion of the undivided Pakistan,” the minister said while replying to a question yesterday.

Besides, Bangladesh is also demanding that Pakistan returns $200 million in foreign aid which was transferred from the Dhaka branch to the Lahore branch of State Bank of Pakistan during the Liberation War in 1971.  The amount was supposed to be used for rehabilitating a cyclone-hit Bangladesh, then East Pakistan, in 1970, the minister said.

He said that Bangladesh raised the issue at different bilateral meetings held between 1977 and 2012.

Responding to another query, the minister said since 1972 Bangladesh and India have signed 87 treaties or memorandums of understandings.

Mahmood said among the 87 treaties, MoU and exchange of instruments, 22 were signed during the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bangladesh visit on June 6-7 this year.

“Implementation process of treaties has already started. It is a continuous process.”

Bangladeshis held abroad

Responding to another query, the minister said as of now, Bangladesh has signed extradition treaties with Thailand and India.

The foreign minister also said an agreement on Transfer of Sentenced Persons (TSP) with was signed with United Arab Emirates during the prime minister’s UAE visit on August 27 last year. “The agreement will come into effect after ratification by both countries.”

Replying to another query, the foreign minister said 3,386 Bangladeshi citizens were detained or under trial in different countries at the moment. There might be more Bangladeshi nationals detained unreported in different countries, he said. “Our embassies are working to update the list soon.”

According to a report placed in the parliament, Oman had 912 Bangladeshi nationals in detainment, the highest among the listed countries. Elsewhere, 409 Bangladeshi citizens are being detained in United Kingdom, and 391 in Saudi Arabia.

Replying to another query, the foreign minister said 82 Bangladeshi nationals are held at Texas Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s El Paso county detention centre.

“Directives were sent to Bangladesh embassy officials in USA to release them from jail after discussing with the US government. Embassy is active in this regard,” he said. 

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