Zero tolerance for terrorism
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday requested the US to return Bangabandhu's convicted killer Rashed Chowdhury to Bangladesh.
She made the request when US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton paid a courtesy call on her at the Prime Minister's Office in the evening.
Briefing reporters, PM's Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad said the prime minister told Hillary that she had lost 18 members of her family due to terrorism and personally faced 19 terrorist attacks. Therefore, as a matter of principle, she always shows zero tolerance for terrorism.
Hasina said that in the last three and half years, her administration contained militancy and terrorism with an iron fist.
She also said the government had enacted Anti-Human Trafficking Act 2011 to stop trafficking in women and children.
Appreciating Bangladesh's initiatives for regional connectivity with its neighbours Nepal, Bhutan and India, Hillary said the country would benefit immensely from it due to its geographical location.
During the meeting, the two leaders discussed various issues of bilateral interests including US investment in Bangladesh.
Hillary said the US-Bangladesh Partnership Agreement, which was signed yesterday, would help to further cement the existing relations between the two nations.
Welcoming the secretary of state, Hasina said the United States is a tested development partner for the country's socio-economic development as well as for strengthening democratic institutions and women empowerment.
She urged the US to invest in the energy sector to help Bangladesh meet its energy demand in the next five years.
Requesting the US government for duty-free and quota-free access for Bangladeshi RMG products to its market, the prime minister said it would help improve the living standards of the country's womenfolk.
She also sought US cooperation in combating the adverse impact of climate change and implementing mitigation programmes like afforestation, coastal embankment, cyclone shelters and dredging of major rivers.
PM's Adviser Gowher Rizvi, Ambassador-at-Large M Ziauddin, Bangladesh Ambassador to US Akramul Qader and Principal Secretary Sheikh Waheeduzzaman were present at the meet.