U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry referred to as Monday for Bangladesh to step up efforts to battle extremist violence and shield and promote human rights amid growing concern about terrorism within the South Asian nation within the wake of a collection of militant assaults.
Kerry, on his first journey to Bangladesh as America’s prime diplomat, met in Dhaka on Monday with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Overseas Minister Abdul Hassam Mahmood Ali , opposition officers and college students. Bangladesh is struggling to cope with the rash of assaults, the newest of which killed 20 individuals, together with 17 foreigners, at a well-liked restaurant final month in Dhaka, the capital.
The Islamic State group has claimed duty for the assault, however Bangladeshi authorities keep that IS has no presence within the nation and that a native banned group, Jumatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh, or JMB, was behind it. Some have accused Bangladesh of turning a blind eye to the potential of outsiders radicalizing parts of the Muslim-majority nation.
Kerry rejected that criticism, saying he doesn’t consider that “the federal government of a Bangladesh has its head within the sand.”
However, he spoke pointedly of the transnational menace posed by terrorism. The July 1 assault on Dhaka’s Holey Artisan Bakery “was an outrage clearly designed to divide Bangladesh, designed to attempt to minimize off this welcoming society from the surface world,” Kerry stated.
“These heinous acts of violence – and too many others worldwide – are a stark, painful reminder that those that help terrorist teams or perpetrate these acts haven’t any respect for nationwide boundaries, no concern for the rights of others, no regard for the rule of regulation,” he stated. Kerry stated a longstanding counterterrorism dialogue has intensified in current months and work with the Bangladeshi police and army will proceed with an eye fixed towards additional cooperation.
On Saturday, police stated that they had killed three suspected militants, together with an alleged mastermind of the cafe assault. However most of the perpetrators of a string of assaults over the previous two years which have killed atheist bloggers, overseas help staff and non secular minorities stay at giant.
Kerry urged the federal government of Bangladesh to withstand the temptation to close down public debate or stifle opposition teams as a method to fight the menace.
“Democracy,” he stated, “nonetheless offers probably the most resilient and dependable platform we now have for stopping and responding to violent extremism … to defeat terrorists, we should uphold, not betray, the democratic rules we cherish they usually abhor.”
Kerry additionally spoke of the necessity for authorities to guard the rights and security of its staff, notably these within the garment business that earns the nation greater than $20 billion a yr from exports, primarily to the USA and Europe and employs about four million staff, principally ladies, in four,000 factories.
“Bangladesh can’t really meet the aspirations of its individuals and share prosperity if its staff aren’t protected and their rights aren’t ensured,” he stated, referring to the 2013 collapse of a constructing that housed 5 garment factories and killed greater than 1,one hundred individuals within the nation’s worst industrial catastrophe.
After his temporary cease in Bangladesh, Kerry travels to India later Monday for the seventh assembly of the U.S.-India strategic dialogue, which seeks to enhance safety and nicely as financial and improvement ties between the nations.
This yr’s discussions are happening as tensions rise within the disputed area of Kashmir, scene of a number of the largest protests towards Indian rule in recent times. Since early July, a minimum of sixty seven civilians have been killed and hundreds injured, principally by authorities forces firing bullets and shotguns at rock-throwing protesters. Two policemen have been killed and a whole lot of presidency forces have been injured within the clashes. On Monday, Indian authorities lifted a curfew in most elements of Indian-managed Kashmir as a part of a fifty two-day safety lockdown however tensions persist.
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