No problem with dialogue but there’re questions as to with whom: Momen

Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen
Foreign ministry

The government will hold dialogues if it is required for upholding democracy in the country but there are questions as to with whom the dialogue will be held, said Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen on Tuesday.

The foreign minister told this to the media in response to a question following the letter of US Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, Donald Lu, to three major political parties to organise a dialogue before the forthcoming parliamentary elections.

“We don’t have any objections to dialogue. We don’t want to destroy democracy. We shall do whatever is required to uphold democracy. We shall sit for dialogues if that is required. But who shall we sit for dialogues, this needs to be considered, there are questions about this,” AK ABdul Momen said.

He further stated that the government takes into consideration any good advice the friendly countries put forth. “They are advising us. We are not taking this otherwise. We consider the counsel of any friendly countries with due importance … and accept that if that is better for the country.”

Mentioning that many such advises come along, the foreign minister said, “We do need to consider whether we can implement the advice that are put forth. We need to consider the reality. We have accepted what the foreigners said regarding the Digital Security Act. We are a highly realistic country; the government is highly realistic. We try to accept if people truly have any complaints.”

Mentioning that they accept any advice if that are better, Abul Momen said we need to consider whether the owners would be able to run a factory of make profits before implementing any advice regarding raising the wages of readymade garments workers to Tk 25,000.

He also asked a newsperson to ask the US embassy if it has taken any initiative of political consensus by sending letters to three major political parties. “Ask them (the US), why they have done so. They can provide a better answer.”

Claiming that Awami League has created a democratic system in the country, he said that the AL wants to persist with it.

Speaking about a recent letter by Volker Türk, incumbent UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, requesting the government to allow BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia to go abroad for better medical care, the foreign minister said, “Ask him whether his country sends any prisoner, criminal and convicted criminal to another country?”