Frame counter-terrorism strategy: PM’s adviser tells workshop

The Daily Star
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Staff Correspondent

Bangladesh is a victim of domestic and international terrorism, said prime minister’s Foreign Affairs Adviser Dr Gowher Rizvi, emphasising on framing a counter-terrorism strategy for the country.

“Bangladesh is a victim of both domestic and international terrorism. We need a counter-terrorism strategy to fight the evil,” he said while inaugurating a two-day workshop titled ‘Towards developing a national counter terrorism strategy for Bangladesh’.

The workshop was jointly organised by The Bangladesh Enterprise Institute (BEI) and US-based Defense Institutions Reform Initiative (DIRI) at the DEI auditorium in the city yesterday. Parliamentarians, foreign diplomats and security experts from home and abroad attended it.

Addressing the launch of the workshop, Rizvi said the present government is putting special emphasis, among others, on counter-terrorism efforts, which however is not enough.

The counter-terrorism strategy should be such that the terrorists have no scope to operate within Bangladesh, he said.

Referring to partnership between the civilians and the military during the War of Liberation, Rizvi said relationship between the civilians and the military is of immense importance, possible through dialogues.

US South and Central Asian Affairs Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Alyssa Ayres appreciated Bangladesh’s efforts against terrorism and militancy.

The US puts special emphasis on cooperation with Bangladesh in combating terrorism, food security and climate change and this will continue, she said.

US Ambassador to Bangladesh James F Moriarty said framing a counter-terrorism strategy to ensure national security is an urgent task.

There is no scope for complacency in only arresting some criminals, said Moriarty, adding that attention should be put to improving human living standards so that people cannot opt for terrorism.

The US is committed to work with Bangladesh in rooting out militancy, Moriarty said, adding that authorities should not lapse concentration on the issue.

DIRI Programme Coordinator John Hansen spoke on the programme while BEI President Farooq Sobhan chaired it.

Four papers, two each from Bangladesh and US, are scheduled to be presented at the workshop on which participants will discuss different aspects of developing a national counter-terrorism strategy.

30 November, 2010