us bangladesh news: US Imposes Sanctions on Top Officials of Bangladesh Rapid Action Battalion Over Human Rights

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  • Bangladesh flared up after US sanctions on security forces and officials
  • Bangladeshi foreign secretary summoned US ambassador and protested
  • Bangladesh may come closer to China due to US sanctions

America’s relationship with Bangladesh, which is trying to encircle China in the Indian Ocean, is now deteriorating. The US has imposed sanctions on Bangladesh’s Rapid Action Battalion and some military officers. In response, Bangladesh has also protested by summoning the US ambassador in Dhaka. The Foreign Secretary of Bangladesh has termed this decision of America as unilateral and unnecessary. It is believed that with this move of America, the relationship between Bangladesh and China can be further strengthened.

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The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Treasury imposed sanctions on 10 organizations and 15 people from several countries, including China, Russia, Myanmar, North Korea, on the occasion of International Human Rights Day on December 10. The list of these sanctions also includes Bangladesh’s Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) and some security officials. The US has imposed these restrictions on cases of human rights abuses and harassment of people.

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Which officials of Bangladesh were banned
Bangladeshi officers banned by the US include the current chief of the Rapid Action Battalion, Chaudhry Abdullah Al Mamoon, Bangladesh’s current police chief Benazir Ahmed, among others. Apart from this, a ban has also been announced on Rapid Action Battalion and some former chiefs. This means that now Bangladesh cannot buy any weapons from the US for this force, apart from this, banned officials can neither travel to America nor do transactions with American banks.

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Bangladesh summons US ambassador
After the US sanctions, the Foreign Secretary of Bangladesh on Saturday summoned the US ambassador to protest. Foreign Secretary Masood bin Momen met US Ambassador Earl Miller and expressed the Bangladesh government’s dismay at the unilateral decision by the US administration without prior consultation, a Bangladesh Foreign Ministry statement said.

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Bangladesh expressed disappointment
Human rights violations and abuses were reported in many countries, including the US, by frivolous elements within law enforcement agencies. But it would not be a justification to alienate higher officials of any law enforcement agency for targeted sanctions. Momen regrets that the issues referred to implement the specified sanctions are under active discussion, including within the framework of regular institutional dialogue between the two countries, and that the US decision came without prior notice.

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China trying to surround India with the help of Bangladesh
China is pushing hard to include Bangladesh in its multi-billion dollar Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). With the help of this project, China wants to make its reach in the Bay of Bengal. India has several naval bases and strategic bases in the region including Andaman and Nicobar and Visakhapatnam. The main objective of China is to surround India by capturing Bangladesh. It has already trapped Sri Lanka and Maldives in its debt trap in the Indian Ocean. Nepal is already speaking the language of China and Pakistan is its evergreen friend.

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Significantly, China has invested $ 26 billion in Bangladesh, while it has committed to invest $ 38 billion. With this, Bangladesh has joined the countries where China has invested the most in infrastructure. Bangladesh imports about $15 billion from China. Whereas the prices of goods exported from Bangladesh to China are much lower than the imports.

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China, engaged in playing economic diplomacy with India’s neighboring countries, had announced the removal of tax on 97 percent of Bangladesh’s products. Enraged by this big announcement by China, the diplomats of Bangladesh called it a milestone in the relations between Beijing and Dhaka. Bangladesh’s foreign ministry had said that 97 per cent of goods, including fish and leather products, are exempt from Chinese tariffs.


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