UK to remain engaged with parties on polls, democracy, rights issues: Envoy

British high commissioner in Bangladesh, Sarah Cooke, speaks to the media at the foreign ministry on 24 January 2024.Prothom Alo

The United Kingdom (UK) sticks to its statement that the 12th national polls in Bangladesh did not take place in compliance with the standards of a free and fair election.

However, the UK will remain positively engaged with the government and political parties here regarding issues like elections, democracy and human rights, said the British high commissioner in Bangladesh, Sarah Cooke.

The UK envoy came up with the statement while talking to the newsmen following a courtesy call on foreign minister Hasan Mahmud on Wednesday.

She said, “You all know that the UK government issued a statement on 8 January, expressing dissent on elections, democracy and human rights issues. In this regard, we would continue positive discussions with the government and the political parties.”

In the meeting, they discussed different bilateral issues, including trade and security partnerships.

“We discussed strengthening our partnership on Bangladesh-UK trade and investment, security, migration, climate change and welfare of the Rohingya,” she said.

The envoy also expressed her country’s encouragement for dialogue and reconciliation in political life in Bangladesh.