Pakistan asks Bangladesh to recall diplomat
Pakistan has asked Bangladesh to withdraw its senior diplomat Moushumi Rahman from the country in 48 hours, without citing any reason.
The move appears to be a counter-action from Islamabad following the withdrawal of its diplomat Farina Arshad from Dhaka on December 23 last year after she was accused of terror financing.
Yesterday, the Pakistan foreign ministry summoned Bangladesh High Commissioner to Pakistan Suhrab Hossain in the afternoon and conveyed the message, a highly placed diplomatic source told The Daily Star.
Moushumi is the counsellor (political) and head of Chancery at the Bangladesh mission in Islamabad.
Dhaka, however, will not bring her back and instead will send her to its diplomatic mission in another country.
A highly placed government source told this correspondent last night that Dhaka took the Islamabad action "very seriously" as it had not cited any allegation against Moushumi.
Bangladesh last year asked Pakistan to take back two of its diplomats stationed in Dhaka for their direct involvement in terror financing and circulating fake Indian currency.
A day after Farina flew back home, the Pak foreign ministry twice summoned the Bangladesh envoy in Islamabad to lodge protest against the recent "treatment meted out to its diplomat" in Dhaka.
Farina, who was the second secretary (political) at the Pakistan High Commission in Dhaka, had close connections and did financial transactions with some militant groups, including Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh, according to a recent confession of a JMB militant.
On January 31, Pakistan recalled its diplomatic official Mazhar Khan for his alleged links with terror financing and currency forgery racket.
Diplomatic ties between Dhaka and Islamabad have soured after Bangladesh started executing the war criminals who actively collaborated with the Pak army in the genocide of some three million Bangladeshis and the rape of no less than two lakh women during the 1971 Liberation War.
Following the execution of top Jamaat leader Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed and BNP leader Salauddin Quader Chowdhury, Pakistan summoned the Bangladeshi envoy there to lodge a formal protest on Nov 30.
It was Moushumi Rahman, acting high commissioner in Islamabad back then, who had met the Pakistan authorities.