Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has urged the global community to undertake concerted action to address the root causes of genocide and ensuring justice to the victims to prevent the recurrence of any future genocide anywhere in the world.
Bangladesh is among the few countries that have experienced one of the worst forms of genocide during the War of Liberation in 1971, she said today.
The prime minister made the remarks in a message on the occasion of the 'International Day of Commemoration and Dignity of the Victims of the Crime of Genocide and of the Prevention of this Crime' and the 72nd anniversary of the 'Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide'.
The prime minister said on March 25, 1971, the Pakistani occupational forces unleashed brutal mass killings on the innocent civilian population of erstwhile East Pakistan to deny the Bangalee nation their legitimate demand for self-determination and annihilate their ethno-political identity.
"The pain and trauma inflicted on us in 1971 motivate us to seek an end to genocide anywhere and demand justice for the victims of this heinous crime.
"To pay deep homage to the victims of the genocide of 1971 and uphold our commitment to prevent these crimes against humanity, our parliament has decided to observe March 25 as 'Genocide Day' and accordingly the day is observed every year," she said.
She said the persecution of the Rohingyas in Myanmar is yet another painful example of such crimes.
She said, out of empathy and in a humanitarian gesture, Bangladesh has stood by these oppressed people and has been temporarily sheltering nearly a million forcibly-displaced Myanmar nationals for the last three years.
Sheikh Hasina urged the international community to help these people to exercise their right to return to Myanmar at the earliest and ensure that they can live there in safety and security.