BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia today called the Gulshan cafe attack a “cowardly act” and urged for a national unity to rid Bangladesh from militancy.
“All our achievement will go in vain if we cannot ensure security and eliminate militancy. Let us come forward, unite, forgetting all our differences,” she said.
The former prime minister was speaking at a press conference at her Gulshan office in Dhaka this afternoon, appearing for the first time since the 11-hour Gulshan hostage crisis that began Friday.
“We will have to unite and unite the people as well. We will have to face the crisis with our collective efforts,” Khaleda said adding that Bangladesh is already facing adverse impacts of the attack.
“People have become stunned and no right-minded people can support such a cowardly attack and killing spree of innocent people,” she said.
No religion can give such ridiculous decision. Islam does not support killing of people and neither does it support terrorism, Khaleda, also chief of the 20-party alliance, said.
Khaleda said “terrorism surfaces when a country is stacked in the grip of autocracy, intolerable politics, repression, suppression, misdeeds, mismanagement and illiteracy”.
It is a national crisis and people’s participation is needed to get rid of the situation, she said.
Earlier, she held a meeting with her party’s senior leaders to discuss the Gulshan hostage crisis and concurrent politics surrounding the attack.
PRO-BNP BODY CALLS FOR DIALOGUE
In a statement, around a hundred eminent citizens under the banner Shata Nagorik Jatiya Committee, a platform of pro-BNP intellectuals demanded that the government holds a national dialogue to tackle the present situation shunning the culture of trading blame.
“We believe that the government and all political parties would sit across the table with open minds for the sake of the national interest to find out a solution,” they said in the statement.
Prof Emajuddin Ahmed, former chief election commissioner Abdur Rauf, Poet Al Mahmud, Prof Anwar Ullah Chowdhury, among others signed the statement.