Rather, an MoU has been inked on defence affairs, says Dr AK Abdul Momen
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen said on Sunday that no deal was signed with Saudi Arabia regarding deployment of Bangladeshi troops in the Middle Eastern country, but merely a memorandum of understanding (MoU).
"Under the MoU, there's a firm conviction not to take any measure against any third party," he said, joining the general discussion of a thanksgiving motion for the President's speech in the House.
"Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia have signed no agreement concerning troop deployment. Rather, an MoU has been inked on defence affairs," he said, adding that signing the MoU has in no way violated the Constitution of Bangladesh.
"So, no question can be raised ....it didn't violate Article 25 of the Constitution with this MoU," the Foreign Minister told the House.
The main theme of this MoU is to contribute towards enhancing international stability through mutual cooperation, he said.
According to the MoU, the defence forces of the two countries will cooperate with each other in military trainings, exercise, education, medical treatment, research and defence industry, exchange military information, intelligence information, military visits and skills, and participate in sociocultural activities, he said.
Under the MoU, the signatories to it will also cooperate with each other in different areas, including military protection and facing pirates, Dr Momen said.
He said Saudi Arabia is very friendly with Bangladesh in facing international terrorism.
Following the request of Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh has promised to extend its hand of cooperation in case of any possible threat to the two holy mosques -- Makkah and Medina -- he added.
The government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is committed to upholding the dignity of the Constitution.
On February 14 last, two senior MPs -- Rashed Khan Menon and Fakhrul Imam-- in Parliament demanded a statement from the Foreign Minister whether the signing of a 'defence pact' between Bangladesh and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in violation of the Constitution.