By Sumi Khan
Dhaka– US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s claim of “Al Qaeda attacks” in Bangladesh has elicited an angry response from Dhaka.
A Bangladesh government statement described Pompeo’s comment as “irresponsible” and “unfortunate”.
The Foreign Ministry in Dhaka on Wednesday night rejected Pompeo’s remarks as baseless and debunked them as falsification.
The statement said there is no evidence of any presence of the Al Qaeda terror group in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh, under the bold leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, maintains a “Zero Tolerance” policy against all forms of terrorism and violent extremism, it said.
Our track record in countering terrorism has earned us global appreciation, the note claimed.
“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 ï¿½preventive’ initiatives to counter terrorism,” the statement added.
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, it further 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 just in pursuit of speculation, Bangladesh considers it very unfortunate, specially in the context of the ever-growing bilateral ties between the two friendly countries based on shared values,” the statement asserted. (IANS)