Foreign Secretary Md. Shahidul Haque today held talks with USAID Administrator Mr. Mark Green and US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Ambassador David Hale. The senior US officials welcomed the Bangladesh Foreign Secretary to their respective offices and discussed issues of common interests.
Foreign Secretary pointed out that immediately after the formation of the new cabinet, the priority identified by the Prime Minister for the new government is good governance- primarily zero-tolerance against corruption. Mr. Haque stated that USA being Bangladesh’s great friend and development partner, the present government looks forward to expanding the existing friendly ties in a multi-sectoral context.
Referring to the Rohingya crisis, Shahidul Haque noted that the recent internal situation in Northern Rakhine is aggravating the prolonged problem. He said that, it is the responsibility of the Myanmar authorities to create the right condition so that all the Rohingyas currently staying in Bangladesh feel safe to go back to Myanmar. He sought US support in resolving the crisis. The US officials lauded the generosity and tolerance of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for providing shelter to the Myanmar nationals who left Rakhine State on the face of persecution by the Myanmar Army.
Shahidul Haque stated that if the US investors come forward, Bangladesh would be happy to offer one of its special economic zones to them.
The US officials termed Bangladesh as a partner that highly matters to them and assured full support towards the solution of the Rohingya crisis. They were appreciative of the present government’s commitment and various initiatives to nab corruption, combat terrorism and prevent trafficking in person.
The visiting Foreign Secretary also had meetings with the Ambassador Alice Wells, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, South and Central Asia Bureau; Ambassador Michael Kozak, Office Chief, Bureau of Democracy, Rights and Labour; Acting Assistant Secretary Carol Thomson O’Connell, Population, Refugee and Migration Bureau; Ambassador at Large John Cotton Richmond, Office Chief, Trafficking in person and Ambassador at Large Nathan Sales, Counterterrorism Bureau and Counterterrorism Coordinator.
Bangladesh Ambassador to the USA, Mr. Mohammad Ziauddin and senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Bangladesh Embassy in Washington D.C. accompanied the Foreign Secretary during the meetings.