The United States is ready to help Bangladesh in fighting terrorism and violent extremism by providing experts and technical supports, US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Desai Biswal said on Thursday,UNB reports.
Biswal came up with the offer when she paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office here in the morning.
After the meeting, PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters. He said Biswal invited Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to co-chair a high-level event on migration with US President Barack Obama to be held in New York during the upcoming 71st UN General Assembly in September.
Sheikh Hasina and Biswal also discussed the issue of recent secret killings in Bangladesh. Biswal put emphasis on ‘better understanding’ with Bangladesh to counter terrorism.
Expressing her concern over the recent killings in Bangladesh, Biswal said the USA and Bangladesh could share information over combating terrorism and violent extremism.
About the issue of terrorism, she said Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has personal sacrifice and experiences in combating terrorism.
“She (Prime Minister) herself is a victim of terrorism as most of her family members were assassinated in the 15 August carnage in 1975,” she said.
The US Assistant Secretary of State stressed the need for strengthening community policing system and expressed satisfaction over strengthening security measures by the Bangladesh government for the safety of the US embassy staff.
Reiterating her government’s ‘zero tolerance policy’ against terrorism, the Prime Minister said her government is always vocal against terrorism and militancy.
“Criminals are criminals, terrorists are terrorists and they’ve no religion and border, “she said.
Referring to the emergence of terrorists and militants during the five-year misrule of the BNP-Jamaat government, Hasina said the BNP-Jamaat clique patronized terrorists and militants.
While talking about the recent killings including USAID Staff Xulhaz Mannan, imams of mosques, priests of temples and churches, the Prime Minister said they are the ‘soft targets’.
“These heinous killings are ‘cold-blooded murders’,” she said adding such killings are being carried out to sensitize the issue. Hasina also requested the US Assistant Secretary of State to provide information regarding terrorism if they have to combat the menace.
She also mentioned the mindless violence and rampage of the BNP-Jamaat clique to resist the January 5 polls and during the three months of the last year.
While talking about the issue of the ‘conspiracy hatched in the USA against Sajeeb Wazed Joy’, the Prime Minister thanked the US government for bringing the accused to justice.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shariar Alam, PMO Secretary Suraiya Begum and US Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Bloom Barnicat were present.