Govt to maintain maximum restraint to avoid conflict: Momen

Foreign minister AK Abdul MomenFile photo

Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen on Thursday said the government does not want any kind of conflict and it will maintain a “maximum restraint”, UNB reports.

"We don’t want any sort of conflict. Sometimes there are instigations to get involved in a conflict. Some people desire to see a dead body for political benefit. They like to see the bodies as it makes it easy for them to use public sentiment for their own gain," he said while talking to the newspersons in Cox's Bazar Thursday.

AK Abdul Momen further said that the news regarding Wednesday’s incident reached Washington even before the news spread in Dhaka because of a Bangladeshi journalist who has access to the White House and the United Nations. “Maybe that's why the US was so prompt.”  

He said like the US, Bangladesh also does not want to see any conflict. “We will maintain maximum restraint.”

Momen said that the American government will not agree to large public meetings on the streets, even in front of the White House. “They will not allow meetings on the streets of Manhattan, New York. There is a rule and system.”

He also said, “We don't want to obstruct our pedestrians.”

The foreign minister said, "If the BNP wants to hold demonstrations and rallies, they can do it for sure, but inside the hall or in open fields. All the people of Bangladesh have the right to speak freely.”

"The government believes in freedom of speech and which is not as much flourishing in many countries as in Bangladesh," the foreign minister said further.

"We are concerned about reports of intimidation and political violence in Dhaka and call on everyone to respect the rule of law and to refrain from violence, harassment, and intimidation," US ambassador to Bangladesh Peter Haas said in a message through the verified Facebook page of the Embassy on Thursday.

He said they encourage government authorities to investigate these violence reports and protect the fundamental freedoms of expression, association, and peaceful assembly.

The US Embassy also extended its condolences to the families of those killed and injured on Wednesday in Dhaka.