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Foreign minister urges US Congressmen to persuade Myanmar

  • Published at 06:32 pm July 18th, 2019
File photo of Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen Collected

US legislators appreciate Bangladesh’s generosity for hosting refugees

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has urged US lawmakers to persuade Myanmar to create a safer environment in the Rakhine State and take back all their forcibly displaced nationals from Bangladesh.

The foreign minister made the call while holding a series of talks with members of the US Congress in Washington DC on Wednesday.

During the meetings, the US lawmakers appreciated Bangladesh’s generosity in hosting a huge number of Rohingya people and said that they would continue to work in this regard, said in the release issued by Bangladesh Embassy in Washington.

Dr Momen acknowledged humanitarian effort and its political support from the US to Bangladesh in dealing with the Rohingya refugee crisis.

Bangladesh is hosting over 1.1 million forcefully displaced Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar and most of them arrived there since August 25, 2017 after a military crackdown by Myanmar, termed as ‘Textbook example of ethnic cleansing” by the UN.

Momen held talks with Senator James E. Risch (Republican – Idaho), Chairman, Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Bob Menendez (Democrat – New Jersey), Ranking Member of the same Committee.

He also met Congressman Eliot Engel (Democrat- New York), Chairman, House Foreign Affairs Committee, Congressman Brad Sherman (Democrat – California), Chairman, Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation, of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Congresswoman Grace Meng (Democrat – New York).

In the meetings, the foreign minister also shared socio-economic development that has taken place in Bangladesh under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, which was appreciated by them.

Momen and the US lawmakers underscored the importance of further expanding trade and investment between Bangladesh and the USA, and deepening the partnership in the days to come.

Bangladesh Ambassador to the US Mohammad Ziauddin was present in the meetings.

The foreign minister is currently visiting Washington, DC, on an invitation from the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, to participate in the Second Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom from July 16 to 18. 

The second Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom is the largest religious freedom event of its kind in the world. 

With more than 1,000 civil society and religious leaders, and more than 100 foreign delegations invited, this year’s gathering marks the first time a Secretary of State has convened back-to-back Ministerials on the same human rights issue.