‘Food, fertiliser, fuel...and Rohingyas’: Dhaka on possible agenda for meeting with Lavrov

Two countries will exchange views on most pressing regional, international issues

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Bangladesh and Russia will discuss issues like food, fertilisers, fuel, and the Rohingya crisis during Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s planned visit to Bangladesh on 7 September, said Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen.

“We will discuss the complex situations that have emerged across the world since the Ukraine crisis. We will highlight the problems that we have,” Masud Bin Momen told reporters at Foreign Service Academy while responding to a question.

Recalling a long-standing relationship with Russia, he said Bangladesh can request Russia to find a peaceful solution to the Ukraine issue as soon as possible.

The two countries will discuss prospects for development of bilateral relations and exchange views on the most pressing regional and international issues, said the Russian Embassy in Dhaka on Tuesday.

Earlier, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen on Wednesday said Bangladesh would raise the Rohingya issue during the visit of Lavrov, the world’s longest-serving foreign minister.

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“We will have a bilateral meeting the day he arrives here. We have many bilateral issues to discuss. We have the Rohingya issue, too,” Abdul Momen said.

He said the Russian foreign minister will also meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during his stay in Dhaka.

The Russian foreign minister will attend the G20 Summit in New Delhi on 9-10 September after completing his visit to Bangladesh.

Lavrov was scheduled to visit Bangladesh on 23 November last year, mainly to attend the 22nd IORA Council of Ministers meeting, held in Dhaka on 24 November. But the visit was called off at the last minute.

Later, Foreign Minister Momen and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov had a telephone conversation and shed light on the bilateral relations between Bangladesh and Russia and expressed their desire to take these relations to greater heights.

During the telephone conversation, the Russian foreign minister expressed his regret for not being able to come to Dhaka due to schedule complications and expressed his intention to make the visit soon.

Momen thanked Russia for its cooperation with Bangladesh in the construction of the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant and invited Russian President Putin to visit Bangladesh on behalf of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.