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Dhaka Tribune

'Washington considers Dhaka as important partner'

Update : 13 Feb 2016, 09:42 AM

The Under-Secretary of State for Political Affairs of the US Department of State Ambassador Thomas Shannon has said Washington considers Bangladesh as its important partner.

"Bangladesh maintained its broad commitment to democracy, which is one of the core values of the US government," he said and underscored the necessity of strengthening the bilateral relations to a new height.

Thomas Shannon made the assertion as State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam, who is now in New York, met him on Friday, according to a message received here today.

During the meeting lasted for about 45 minutes, both of them also discussed other issues of common concerns including the global threat of ISIS, climate change, recent attacks on foreigners and bloggers in Bangladesh.

The state minister briefed Shannon on various initiatives of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's government to counter these radical forces and reiterated the premier's 'zero tolerance' stance against all sorts of terrorism and violent extremism.

At the very outset of the meeting, Shahriar Alam congratulated Shannon on officially assuming the charge of the office of the US Under Secretary of State. The state minister was the first visitor to meet Shannon in his new capacity.

Shannon thanked the state minister and said his maiden visit to Bangladesh in December last year was very important and fruitful. He termed it a great way to start his visit to South Asia.

The state minister thanked Shannon for choosing Bangladesh as his first destination in South Asia.

Shahriar Alam said that Bangladesh and the USA enjoyed excellent bilateral relations and it was high time to take it to a higher level as he mentioned about the existing bilateral cooperation in security, trade, counter terrorism and intelligence sharing.

Both Shahriar and Shannon underscored the necessity of a close cooperation in different sectors to generate positive perception among the peoples of the two countries and to further cementing the existing friendly relations.

Earlier, the state minister held a meeting with Assistant Secretary of State Nisha Desai Biswal and discussed various issues of common concerns.

Terming the two countries close partners, Nisha Desai also emphasized enhanced engagements between Dhaka and Washington in the coming days.

The state minister also met with Peter Lavoy, Senior Director for South Asian Affairs of the US National Security Council at the White House.

During the meeting, Lavoy lauded Bangladesh's achievements in various sectors, such as women empowerment, education and her commitment to international peace keeping and countering terrorism and violent extremism.

Bangladesh Ambassador to the USA Mohammad Ziauddin was present during the meetings, the message added.

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