January 19, 2023
DHAKA – Law Minister Anisul Huq yesterday said the US has not imposed more sanction against the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) as their activities and human rights situation in Bangladesh have improved significantly.
“I have talked to US Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia Donald Lu, who recently visited Dhaka. We discussed about the human rights situation in Bangladesh. He (Lu) said the Human Rights Watch (HRW) never writes good about anybody, but they (HRW) wrote in their report that the human rights situation has improved in Bangladesh after the sanction was imposed on Rab”.
“He (Lu) said the US perhaps would have imposed more sanction on Rab, but they did not do so as the Rab has done many good works. He also said the US understands that Rab is needed in Bangladesh. As the human rights situation has significantly improved in Bangladesh, they did not imposed sanction anymore,” the minister said.
He was speaking to journalists after a meeting with Malaysian High Commissioner Haznah Md Hashim at his ministry office in Secretariat.
Replying to a question, Anisul said he did not discuss with Donald Lu about when the sanction might be withdrawn, as there is a legal procedure for it.
“We are going ahead in accordance with legal procedure, and hope that the sanction will be lifted through this procedure,” he said.
In response to another query, he said there is no scope for reintroducing the caretaker government system in the country as the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court has scrapped this system and constitution has been amended to this effect.
Donald Lu did neither say that a participatory election must be held in Bangladesh nor gave any instruction that the election will have to be held in this way or that way, he said. They (US) only want that the democracy of Bangladesh develops and the methods for the development of democracy are used properly.
The law minister informed that he requested Lu to take steps so that the US deport Rashed Chowdhury, a convicted killer of Bangabandhu, to Bangladesh.
“He asked me to communicate with the justice department of the US for this purpose. We will do that. Besides, we will knock all the doors to bring him (Rashed) back to Bangladesh,” he said.
Replying to a question, Anisul said the government does not take any action to harass BNP men, but takes necessary steps to protect the safety and properties of people.
He said the situation in Brahmanbaria court has improved a lot as the lawyers are now boycotting courts of two judges. “Had I known about it, things would not have come this far. I hope that the problems there will be solved soon,” he said.
He also said during yesterday’s meeting, he requested the Malaysian government through its high commissioner to ask Myanmar to take Rohingya people from Bangladesh back to that country and take more Bangladeshi workers to Malaysia.
The Malaysian envoy replied in the positive, he said.