PM’s Japan visit to be rescheduled
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's official visit to Japan, which was slated for November 29-December 1, will be rescheduled.
Shahriar Alam, state minister for foreign affairs, said this to reporters yesterday following a bilateral meeting with TAKEI Shunsuke, Japanese state minister for foreign affairs, who was in Dhaka to attend the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) ministerial-level meeting.
A new date for the visit is likely to be fixed soon and will be announced later, Shahriar said.
Shunsuke told reporters that the meeting will be scheduled "at an appropriate time".
Shahriar said, "In diplomacy, many things happen. We were yet to officially announce the date but there was a date that you knew of … That has been changed. But it [rescheduling] will happen soon and we will inform [you about] it later."
He added Bangladesh and Japan were still working on preparing a number of agreements and MoUs to be signed during the visit.
Asked why it was postponed, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen in a separate media briefing said there are some political issues in Japan at this moment, with three of the country's ministers tendering resignation in just one month.
Besides, there have been issues of rising Covid-19 infections there in the recent times.
"So, we are observing the situation," he said.
Earlier, Japanese Prime Minister Ito Naoki said Japan wants to take the relationship with Bangladesh to a strategic level.
The two countries were also working on some documents for defence cooperation, officials said.
Shahriar Alam said he briefed the Japanese state minister about the deteriorating law and order situation in Myanmar and sought greater support from Japan on Rohingya repatriation, as well as the funding gap for the humanitarian activities for the refugees.
He said Japan is a very trusted friend of Bangladesh and the relationship is growing further.
The Japanese Economic Zone in Araihazar will be inaugurated soon, he said.
Besides, Shahriar said Shunsuke told him that they would support a new power plant of alternative fuel in Matarbari, as an earlier plan for a coal-based power plant to be built there was cancelled.
Asked if he discussed anything about the recent remarks made by Japanese Ambassador Ito Naoki on the 2018 elections, Shahriar said he softly mentioned that "elections were internal matters".