Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday reaffirmed Bangladesh’s firm commitment to remain engaged with the United Nations in its efforts towards preventing conflict and establishing peace in the world.
"Bangladesh always remains ready to contribute troops and police in response to UN call for strengthening world peace and stability," she said.
The Prime Minister made the remark when visiting UN Under Secretary General for the Department of Peacekeeping Operations Jean Pierre Lacroix paid a courtesy call on her at her Jatiya Sangsad office.
After the meeting, Prime Minister’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters.
Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh also remains prepared to support the UN peacekeeping capability readiness steps.
As per the UN request, she said, the government is also ready with “rapid deployment battalion” for MONUSCO, Democratic Republic of Congo.
The Prime Minister underscored implementation of a nine-point reform agenda for the UN Peacekeeping operations presented by the UN Secretary General and assured the UN of Dhaka’s support in this regard.
While talking about the Rohingya issue, Hasina pointed out Bangladesh's foreign policy of ‘friendship to all, malice to none’ and said the country wants to maintain peace with all.
"Accordingly, the government opened dialogue with Myanmar to solve the Rohingya crisis," she said.
The Prime Minister regretted that Myanmar authorities agreed to take back their nationals from Bangladesh, but they did not act as per their commitment.
"The presence of nearly 11 lakh Rohingya people is a huge burden on Bangladesh and it is causing sufferings to local people where they have been sheltered," she said.
The Prime Minister said all, including the army, navy, air force, police, BGB, administration and volunteers have been working to mitigate the sufferings of the Rohingya people.
At the meeting, the UN Under-Secretary General highly praised the role of Bangladeshi peacekeepers, including the female troops and police, in maintaining peace at UN missions in different parts of the world.
Jean Pierre Lacroix recalled that many Bangladeshi peacekeepers sacrificed their lives while they were on duties in establishing peace at the UN missions.
He said Bangladesh is a key member regarding peacekeeping efforts under the world body.
The UN Under-Secretary General assured the Prime Minister of continuing the UN support towards development efforts of the government of Bangladesh.
Principal Staff Officer of the Armed Forces Division Lt General Md Mahfuzur Rahman and Prime Minister’s Office Secretary Sajjadul Hassan were present.