US has responsibility to work with Bangladesh despite polls concerns: US State Dept

US state department spokesperson Mathew MillerFile photo

US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller has said the concern over the national polls in Bangladesh doesn’t mean that the US doesn’t have any responsibility to work with Bangladesh.

He said this in response to a question from a newsperson during the regular briefing of the state department Thursday.

A newsperson at the press briefing asked the State Department spokesperson, “As I found on your last press note on Bangladesh, the United States is interested in working with Bangladesh in various security areas. These areas include counterterrorism, border security, cyber security, maritime security, and regional stability. How is it possible to work in a larger context with the new government in Bangladesh without welcoming the prime minister?"

Matthew Miller said in response, “I would say that we have relationships of this sort all around the world. We expressed our concerns about the Bangladeshi election. We’ve expressed our concerns about crackdowns in Bangladesh, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have the responsibility to work with the government – both on areas where we have concern and also areas where we believe we can cooperate on shared priorities.”

Another newsperson raised the Myanmar issue in the briefing saying, “You know that in Myanmar now, the junta and other parties – this is a war zone. And more Rohingyas are about to enter Bangladesh and also some military personnel with helicopters. Do you have any comments on the situation there?”

Mathew Miller said in response that he would address the issue later.