March 31, 2022
DHAKA – Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said Bangladesh abstained from voting on the UN General Assembly resolution reprimanding Russia for invading Ukraine as it was against a particular country.
But Bangladesh stood for humanity in the UNGA, the premier told parliament.
“When voting was held on a particular country [Russia], we abstained. But when the human rights issue came up in the second proposal of the United Nations General Assembly, Bangladesh voted in favour of it,” she said clearing the country’s stance on the issue.
The leader of the House was replying to a supplementary question from Jatiya Party MP Mujibul Haque Chunnu (Kishoreganj-3) regarding the vote on the UNGA’s second proposal.
“As the issue of human rights was involved, Bangladesh stood in favour of it. It is quite clear and no one should be in any doubt about it.”
The premier said the Ukrainian people were becoming refugees and children were also suffering due to the war.
Hasina said when the first proposal was tabled in the UNGA, Bangladesh found that there was no human rights issue, no initiative to stop the war and no other issues rather than only a vote against a country. “Seeing it, I decided not to vote.”
The PM said the war didn’t begin on its own, rather there might be someone who was provoking and forced the start of the war. She questioned why one country would be condemned.
Hasina mentioned that Russia is a friendly country to Bangladesh and it stood by Bangladesh when the Seventh Fleet was sent towards Pakistan during the Liberation War in 1971.
“Russia stood by us in our bad time and we would surely stand by them. But if they do anything wrong, we won’t accept it,” she said.
US SANCTIONS ON RAB
Responding to a question on the US sanctions on Rab, the prime minister blamed a section of Bangladeshi people for it.
“There is nothing to say if the country’s people defame their own country abroad…. the sanctions on Rab was imposed as a group of people from our country worked for it.”
Hasina said the US after 9/11 suggested countries curb terrorism and the then BNP government established Rapid Action Battalion as per their advice.
The PM said there is no doubt that the BNP used Rab indiscriminately, but the elite force worked to curb terrorism, militancy, repression on women, and conducted investigations into murders during the tenure of the Awami League government.
She said some people in the country remain well whenever an “unusual government” stays in power as they become persons of very high importance at that time. “When any democratic process continues in the country, they engage themselves against it.”
The leader of the House said some representatives of that vested group went to the USA and filed complaints with the justice department and other offices during meetings. She said no official of the Bangladesh embassy was allowed in those meetings. “And the sanctions came.”
Hasina said whenever any Rab member did anything wrong, he was brought to justice immediately. “Even a minister’s son-in-law, who was an army officer, was not spared. He was brought under trial.”
The PM mentioned that there is a group of people in the country such as intellectuals or various types of organisations, who job is to earn money by speaking against Bangladesh.
“Whatever you say they don’t like it because their income or consultancy will be stopped if they don’t speak or defame Bangladesh abroad.”
She said those people actually don’t want to see Bangladesh move forward.
PM’S HAPPIEST MOMENT IN LIFE
Replying to another question, Hasina said the government is giving houses to the homeless and landless people of the country on the occasion of the “Mujib Borsho”.
She said Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s dream was to ensure houses and land for each people of the country.
The PM said she gave a house to a landless person and saw smile on the recipient’s face, which was the happiest moment of her life.