Bangladesh FS invites foreign diplomats amid allegations of 'democratic backsliding' in that country

Bangladesh FS invites foreign diplomats amid allegations of 'democratic backsliding' in that country

New Delhi, Nov 25 (PTI) Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen briefed diplomats of nearly 90 foreign missions in Delhi on Dhaka's foreign policy priorities, political developments and preparations for the upcoming general elections against the backdrop of western allegations of 'democratic backsliding' in that country.

A day after the interaction with the diplomats, Momen told journalists on Saturday that he invited countries to send observers to Bangladesh ahead of the election.

Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra and Momen held extensive talks on Friday here under the framework of India-Bangladesh Foreign Office Consultations (FOC).

'I met the heads of missions to brief them about political developments...I invited them to visit Bangladesh before the elections,' Momen said.

The US has been critical of the Sheikh Hasina government in Bangladesh over the political atmosphere as well as the alleged 'democratic backsliding' in that country ahead of the general elections in January.

It has been calling on Dhaka to ensure free and fair elections in the country.

Bangladesh Nationalist Party, the opposition party in Bangladesh, has been targeting Prime Minister Hasina and her Awami League party for allegedly trying to muffle its voice.

A number of envoys who attended the interaction with Momen last evening are those who are accredited to Bangladesh and operate from their missions in India.

In his address to the diplomats, the Bangladesh foreign secretary also called on the heads of missions of those countries which are still operating from New Delhi.

Momen also apprised them about Bangladesh's various achievements including its economic growth and socio-economic development.

'I briefed the envoys on Bangladesh's development journey and achievements in various fields,' he said at the media briefing.

At the foreign office consultation, the Indian and Bangladeshi sides discussed a wide range of issues to further expand the ties.

'The Indian side appreciated Bangladesh's participation in the recently held Virtual G20 summit and the Voice of Global South Summit 2.0,' the Ministry of External Affairs said.

'Both sides held comprehensive discussions on a wide range of issues covering border and security, trade, commerce and connectivity, cooperation in water, power and energy sectors, people to people ties and development cooperation in Bangladesh,' it said. PTI MPB ZMN ZMN

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