Pompeo's remarks on Al Qaeda in Bangladesh irresponsible: Foreign ministry | The Daily Star
12:21 AM, January 14, 2021 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:29 AM, January 14, 2021

Pompeo's remarks on Al Qaeda in Bangladesh irresponsible: Foreign ministry

Dhaka has termed Washington's remarks that terrorist group al-Qaeda carried out attacks from Bangladesh as irresponsible and unfounded.

In a recent statement, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo mentioned Bangladesh as a place where al-Qaeda carried out attacks, falsely fearing similar terrorist attacks in future.

In response, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement on Wednesday strongly rejecting Pompeo's assertion as "irresponsible". There is no evidence of any presence of Al-Qaeda in Bangladesh, it said.

"Such irresponsible comments by a senior leader is very unfortunate and unacceptable," the foreign ministry said.

Bangladesh, under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, maintains a "Zero Tolerance" policy against all forms of terrorism and violent extremism, and has been undertaking all possible measures and actions to address the menace, it said.

"Our track record in countering terrorism has earned us global appreciation. In line with our commitment to countering terrorism, we have become a party to all 14 international counter-terrorism conventions and are actively involved with international 'preventive' initiatives to counter terrorism."

Bangladesh considers that the US Secretary of State's referring to Bangladesh as a possible location for Al-Qaeda operations is indeed unfounded and offers no evidence, the ministry said.

"If any such claim could be substantiated with evidence, the government of Bangladesh would be happy to take necessary measures against such activities."

However, if such a statement is made out of speculation, Bangladesh considers it very unfortunate, especially in the context of the growing bilateral ties between the two friendly countries based on shared values, peace and common goals, the foreign ministry said.

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