Nafis declined consular access
The family of Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, a Bangladeshi arrested by US federal authorities in a sting operation last month, hopes the government will provide the youth with legal aid.
Talking to The Daily Star yesterday, Nafis's father Quazi Mohammad Ahsanullah said Bangladesh embassy officials in Washington wanted to meet Nafis immediately after the arrest.
The US authority told the officials that Nafis had refused to see them. They wanted to hear the refusal from his mouth but got no reply from the US side, he added.
A US District Court grand jury in New York on Thursday charged Nafis with trying to use a bomb as a weapon of mass destruction and trying to provide explosives and communications equipment to al Qaeda terrorists.
Yesterday, US ambassador to Dhaka Dan W Mozena replying to queries at Savar CRP yesterday said the situation with Nafis was known to him. The youth was offered consular access immediately, but for reasons of his own, he demurred, BBC reports.
Contacted, Ahsanullah said he does not believe Nafis had refused diplomatic assistance.
He said none from the government side has contacted him yet. As he went to the foreign ministry about 10 days ago, officials told him that the ministry has been in touch with the US State Department but is yet to get consular access to Nafis.
“I hope Bangladesh government will provide legal aid to prove my son's innocence,” the father, a banker in Dhaka, said.
On Friday, for the first time after his arrest, Nafis talked to his parents over telephone from the US. He could just ask his parents how they were doing. The line disconnected in around three minutes and they could not discuss legal issues.
An US attorney for Nafis had advised his parents through an e-mail not to talk anything with their son except exchanging pleasantries.
Also on Friday, Raymond Kelly, chief of New York Police Department, exchanging views with expatriate Bangladeshis said Nafis was not considered different for being Bangladeshi.
Asked whether Nafis was trapped and inspired by detectives to involve in terrorism, Kelly said the court would take legal actions if the Bangladeshi student was trapped.
Talking at Jamaica Muslim Center, he also said the New York police work for human beings irrespective of nation, creed or race. There is nothing for Bangladeshis to panic regarding Nafis issue, Bangla daily Prothom Alo reports.