M Shahriar Alam
Bangladesh is waiting to see a permanent government in Afghanistan without hurriedly reaching a decision whether it will welcome the interim government or not, said State Minister for Foreign Affair M Shahriar Alam. “We’re still observing the situation very closely. Our focus still remains on peace and stability fully free from any war,” he told reporters at his office on Wednesday. Read: Bangladesh to take its policy towards Afghanistan independently: FM The State Minister said they came to know about the formation of an interim government and they are not going to reach a decision on whether Bangladesh will welcome it or not. “We don’t want to do anything hurriedly.” He said there are some ideological areas that Bangladesh will not be compromising and noted that they are not in a hurry but are closely observing the development. The Taliban on Tuesday announced an all-male interim government for Afghanistan. The State Minister thanked all concerned as some Bangladesh nationals have been able to return home. He said still there are 10 Bangladesh nationals and seven of them are willing to stay back there as they are finding some sort of comfort there. The State Minister laid emphasis on the safety of all nationals who are still staying in Afghanistan.
India, depending on the scale of production of vaccines within the country, is aiming at July-end or August to at least release those vaccines that have been bought by Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal and are now in pending status, reported The Print on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Kumar Doraiswami had an "informal meeting" with State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam on Wednesday at his office at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. However, neither side revealed what they discussed. Also read: Let's see what can be done, have patience: PM about vaccine management Bangladesh entered into a deal with the Serum Institute of India (SII) to purchase 30 million doses of a potential vaccine being developed by AstraZeneca for Covid-19. Bangladesh was supposed to get five million doses of vaccine per month as the SII and Bangladesh’s Beximco Pharma signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for priority delivery of the vaccine doses. Also read: Bangladesh rolls out Pfizer vaccine at 3 Dhaka centers Bangladesh sought at least 3 million doses of vaccine under the agreement to address the immediate demand in Bangladesh. Bangladesh has so far received only 7 million of Oxford-AstraZeneca covid-19 vaccine doses produced by Serum Institute of India (SII) through its contract. Bangladesh also received 3.3 million doses of vaccine as a bilateral partnership gift.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam has called for collective efforts by the global leaders in tackling climate change and its adverse consequences. He made the call while delivering a keynote speech virtually at the ‘P4G Thematic Breakout Session on Water’ on the sidelines of the P4G Seoul Summit- 2021. Also Read: Calls for immediate action to tackle climate change P4G -- Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030 -- is a global initiative launched in 2017 to accelerate the response to climate change and the implementation of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals. It is a multilateral platform that aspires to channel investments in impact to deliver inclusive and tangible solutions to Build Back Better and Greener to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement. As an active partner of P4G, Bangladesh has already developed nodes of partnership in the five P4G focus areas, like “Financial Inclusion Improves Sanitation & Health (FINISH) Mondial”, “Sustainable Future for Textile Factories”, “Clean Water for All’ etc, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. State Minister Alam lauded the market-based solution orientation of the P4G platform in ensuring access to safe and clean water and sanitation in developing countries. While presenting an overview of Bangladesh’s leadership role in spearheading innovative adaptive solutions to climate change induced challenges, Alam highlighted Bangladesh’s firm commitment as the current Chair of Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) to break new grounds in garnering financing and international resolve to balance lives and livelihoods in all the vulnerable member states. He underlined Bangladesh’s exemplary precedence of establishing a “Climate Change Trust Fund” and expenditure over US$ 415 million from its own resources to implement over 800 mitigation and adaptation programmes, despite being a LDC. The State Minister lauded Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visionary leadership in fighting against climate change. Alam mentioned that Bangladesh has been spending, on average, 2.5% of its national GDP for adaptation and resilience building measures through projects like the ‘Barind Multipurpose Development Project (BMDP)’. He said Bangladesh has adopted a unique ‘Delta Plan-2100’ that aligns with the five P4G focus areas in cross-cutting ways and fortifies the country’s commitment to the global goals towards green development. The inaugural P4G Summit convened on 19-20 October 2018 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Bangladesh will host a two-day world peace conference in November this year, marking the ongoing birth centenary celebration of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman as part of promoting a culture of peace and tolerance. Bangabandhu Peace Award will be introduced and conferred during the conference. Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen said this while addressing a discussion at Foreign Service Academy, marking the anniversary of Bangabandhu's Joliot Curie Peace Prize given in recognition of his contributions to world peace. Also read: New Delhi mission observes Bangabandhu's Joliot-Curie award anniversary The Father of the Nation, who was a proponent of peace and addressing problems with dialogue, diplomacy and peaceful resolution of conflicts, was awarded the medal on May 23, 1973. It was the first international award to the newly-independent Bangladesh.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam has said the UN and the international partners need to support national governments in their efforts to protect and advance the cause of women. "During this trying time, let’s redouble our efforts to ensure women empowerment globally and their full, equal, and meaningful participation in all peace initiatives," he said. He was addressing a webinar titled "Women, Security and Peacebuilding: A 21st Century Perspective" on Friday night. Bangabandhu Centre for Bangladesh Studies in Canada - BCBS - in collaboration with the Bangladesh High Commission, Ottawa, Canada, organised the webinar. Also read: Hungary, Bolivia want COVID-19 vaccine from Bangladesh: Shahriar Alam Mobina SB Jaffer, Senator for British Columbia, Jacqueline O’Neill, Ambassador of Women, Peace and Security, Global Affairs Canada, Yasmin Ratansi, MP Don Valley East, Ontario, Major General (ret) Kristin Lund, Former Head of Mission UNTSO, Norway and Commander Carla Monteiro de Castro Araújo, MINUSCA, Military Gender Advisor for the Force spoke as panelists. Dr Khalilur Rahman, the High Commissioner of Bangladesh in Canada and Chief Patron of BCBS, welcomed the panelists to the webinar and made his introductory remarks highlighting the importance of the issue as well as the role Bangladesh and Canada have been playing in promoting women’s empowerment, peace and security. Shahriar said their investment in women and girls is paying dividends. "Our women are now a strong catalyst for our rapid socio-economic progress. They aren’t mere recipients, but active agents of our socio-economic changes," he said. Also read: Bangladesh has lowest gender pay gap: Shahriar Alam The panelists applauded Bangladesh’s role in the adoption of UN resolution 1325, its national implementation along with the related SDGs to empower women and engage them in peacekeeping.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam on Wednesday said Bhasan Char is now a settled issue and hoped that international agencies will get engaged taking responsibility of Rohingyas in Bhasan Char, the way they are doing in Cox’s Bazar Rohingya camps. “Bhasan Char isn’t an issue now. It's resolved,” he said, mentioning that the UN team and diplomats who have visited the Bhasan Char did not raise any “disagreement” but there are a few recommendations. Also read:2 years of Rohingya influx: 43 murders in camps, 32 killed in ... As of now, the government of Bangladesh has relocated over 18,500 Rohingya to Bhasan Char in several phases out of a planned relocation of 100,000 Rohingyas. “We’re managing their basic humanitarian needs from our own exchequer -- given that the UN is yet to commence their operation at the island,” said the State Minister while addressing a webinar as the chief guest. Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised the webinar on “The Rohingya Crisis: Response of the International Community and the Repatriation Process”. He said though Bangladesh is happy over the role of some friendly countries regarding the Rohingya issue but cannot express satisfaction over the position of other friendly countries. “UN is talking about it repeatedly but nothing effective is happening,” Shahriar said, adding that some countries are not spending much time repatriating Rohingyas. Also read: 1,700 more Rohingyas on their way to Bhashan Char Bangladesh also spent over USD 350 million from its own budget to develop Bhasan Char with better infrastructures and amenities to relocate a portion of Rohingyas from the over-congested and disaster-prone camps in Cox’s Bazar. The State Minister said the UN and other countries are yet to do what they were supposed to do towards Rohingya repatriation.
The D-8 countries on Thursday agreed to explore the possibilities of developing and enhancing transport connectivity among D-8 Member States to facilitate trade and investment, including the intra-D-8 trade. “There’s a lot of opportunities and possibilities. We’ll take initiatives to boost trade and investment and create jobs,” Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen told reporters at a virtual press conference after the 10th Summit. State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam and Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen were present. Dr Momen said they believe that trade and investment among the D-8 countries will be increased through cooperation. The Summit adopted two documents – “Dhaka Declaration 2021”, and “D-8 Decennial Roadmap for 2020-2030.” Dr Momen said the D-8 leaders commended and supported the idea of the government of Bangladesh to engage the youth and ensure their participation in the new reality of 4IR through hosting the first-ever D-8 Youth Summit. Also read: D-8 Summit: Hasina for building a better future together If nurtured properly, the demographic asset of more than 50 percent of the D-8 populace under 24 years of age could become the fulcrum that boosts up economic growth of the Member States, according to Dhaka Declaration 2021.
The Saudi government did not say that the Rohingyas, living in Saudi Arabia, will be sent back to Bangladesh, said State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam on Wednesday.
Bangladesh looks forward to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit this month to take forward the bilateral relations with some deliverables, said State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam on Tuesday.