Dhaka, Apr 25 (UNB) - The government of Bangladesh has contributed $15,000 to a special Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) Trust Fund to support the project to upgrade the current OPCW Laboratory and Equipment Store.
This project will result in the construction of a new facility, the OPCW Centre for Chemistry and Technology (ChemTech Centre).
The contribution was formalised by the exchange of letters between OPCW Director-General Fernando Arias, and Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the OPCW Ambassador Sheikh Mohammed Belal, said the OPCW on Thursday.
Ambassador Belal said, “Bangladesh is happy to be part of this future-oriented project. We would urge all to come forward to make this Laboratory a bastion of ‘never again’ in memory of all the victims of chemical weapons across the world.”
Director-General Arias expressed his gratitude to the government of Bangladesh for its support and appealed to all OPCW States Parties in a position to make voluntary contributions to do so, emphasising that the new ChemTech Centre will be a resource for all States Parties and that “All contributions, regardless of size, are greatly appreciated.”
So far, 15 States Parties and the European Union have contributed or pledged to contribute financially to the project and a considerable amount has already been raised to date, said a press release on Thursday.
The project to build the ChemTech Centre is going on and seeks to strengthen the OPCW’s capabilities to fully address new and emerging chemical weapons threats, as well as to support capacity building in OPCW Member States.
However, the current facility will no longer be fit-for-purpose due to its ageing infrastructure, space constraints, larger workloads, and new missions with new areas of work.
A new facility is required to meet the demands of OPCW States Parties for enhanced verification tools, improved detection capabilities and response measures, as well as increased capacity-building activities.
To date, the following States Parties have contributed or pledged to contribute to the project: Algeria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, Estonia, France, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, the Republic of Korea, Slovakia, Spain, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the United States of America.
Over 96 percent of all chemical weapon stockpiles declared by possessor States have been destroyed under OPCW verification.
For its extensive efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.
Savar, Apr 25 (UNB)— A man, who volunteered in rescue operations after the Rana Plaza collapse, reportedly committed suicide by setting himself on fire in Birulia on Wednesday night.
The sister of Nowshad Hasan Himu, 27, said he was “deeply affected” by the tragedy that claimed the lives of more than 1,100 people six years ago. Himu was the son of Sarder Abul Hossain, of Babor village Patuakhali district in Barishal.
Himu was also an active member of left-leaning Bangladesh Chhatra Federation and Ganosamhati Andolon.
Former Chhatra Federation chief Saikat Mallik said that the man set himself on fire around 9:30pm on the sixth anniversary of the tragedy.
He was taken to Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College Hospital where doctors pronounced him dead, said Azgar Ali, sub-inspector of Savar Model Police Station.
His body has been handed over to his family after an autopsy, police said.
The 2013 Rana Plaza collapse put the spotlight on the poor working conditions at factories in Bangladesh, the second-largest exporter of RMG products. It took place several months after a fire killed over a hundred workers at another factory.
The government has since been working to improve the situation in the sector, which earns most of its foreign currencies.
Jahangirnagar University, Apr 25 (UNB) - A two-day inter-university debate competition will begin at Jahangirnagar University (JU) on Friday.
JU Debate Organisation (JUDO) in association with Cultural Affairs Ministry will organise the contest for 14th time, said convener of the event JUDO Vice President Maruf Mozammel at a press conference in Jahangirnagar University Journalists’ Association (JUJA) office in the afternoon.
A total of 30 public and private universities across the country will participate in the contest which will be inaugurated by moderator of JUDO Professor ATM Atiqur Rahman.
The prize-giving ceremony and concluding session of the competition will be held on April 27 at Selim Al Deen Muktamacha of the campus.
JUDO President Foysal Mahmud Shanto, Secretary Tazrin Islam Tonni, Media Secretary Shafi Muhammad Sagor, Co-convener of this programme, Sazid Hasan Chowdhury were also present at the briefing among others.