No deal over deployment of troops with SA | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 11, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 05:56 AM, March 11, 2019

No deal over deployment of troops with SA

FM tells parliament

Bangladesh did not sign any agreement with Saudi Arabia over deployment of troops, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen told parliament last night.

A Memorandum of Understanding on defence cooperation has been signed with the country, he said.

There is a firm conviction not to take any measure against any third party under the MoU, he said taking part in the thanksgiving motion on the president's speech.

Speaking in parliament on February 14, two senior lawmakers -- Workers Party President Rashed Khan Menon and Jatiya Party MP Fakhrul Imam -- demanded a statement from the foreign minister whether the signing of a “defence pact” between Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia was contradictory to the constitution.

The foreign minister, however, yesterday said signing of the MoU has in no way violated the constitution.

"Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia have signed no agreement over troops deployment. Rather, an MoU has been inked on defence affairs. It didn't violate article 25 of the constitution…." he told parliament.

The main theme of this MoU is to contribute to enhancing international stability through mutual cooperation.

According to the MoU, the defence forces of the two countries will cooperate with each other in military training, exercise, education, medical treatment, research and defence industry, exchange military information, intelligence, military visit and skill, and participation in socio-cultural activities, he said.

Following a request from Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh has promised to cooperate in case there is a threat on the holy mosques in Makkah and Medina, he added.

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