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Anti-Bangladesh conspiracy continues in full swing

Bangladesh, US Department of State, Rapid Action Battalion, RAB, Bangladesh Nationalist Party, Jamaat-e-Islami, Budapest, General Aziz Ahmed, Bangladesh Army, Muslim, Dawood Ibrahim

Oped

Anti-Bangladesh conspiracy continues in full swing

While anti-Bangladesh conspiracy has been continuing in full swing with a number of culprits working for months with the agenda of tarnishing the image of the country, despite repeated reports published in Blitz giving details of such notorious conspiracies, intelligence agencies in the country had ignored such investigative reports and did not take any measures in countering nefarious activities of the anti-Bangladesh forces.

According to media reports, the United States has imposed sanctions on several incumbent and former officials of elite anti-terrorism Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) while former chief of Bangladesh Army, General Aziz Ahmed has been declared persona non grata by the US Department of State.

Former Army Chief General Aziz has been declared undesirable in the United States. Earlier Qatar-based terror-broadcast network Al Jazeera, with a help of an individual named Zulkarnain Saer Khan (featured as Sami) aired a bogus report bringing outrageous allegations against General Aziz. Sami is an ex-cadet expelled from Bangladesh Military Academy on charges of drug addiction.

Blitz report said, Zulkarnain is the owner of an Indian restaurant named ‘Curry House’ located at District, VIII., 1. Horánszky Street – Budapest, Hungary. The manager cum kitchen’s chief of this restaurant is an Indian national named Kumar Deepak Negi. Other members of the team are: Saurabh Mathur (Head bartender – Indian national), and Shyam Shrestha (Chief chef – Nepalese national). This restaurant was opened on October 6, 2013.

Our team of investigative journalists found Saer Khan’s Curry House being a regular meeting place of the members of mega-terror outfit Hamas and Hezbollah as well as sleeper cell members of Islamic State in Hungary.

On September 24, 2016, explosion ripped through the center of Budapest and seriously injured two policemen. The blast occurred a week before the country went to the polls to vote in the controversial migrant quota referendum. The social media chatter immediately connected the bombing with the referendum, while counterterrorism experts saw hands of radical Islamic terrorist groups behind this explosion. But no one knew – this terrorist attack plot was finalized by some Muslim terrorists weeks back at the Curry House – a restaurant owned by Zulkarnain Saer Khan.

It is claimed by one of Khan’s Hungarian friends, this Bangladeshi born businessman has been running transnational money laundering activities under the garb of restaurant business, while he also is actively involved in supplying escort girls mostly to tourists from Asian countries.

With the huge flow of cash, mostly generated from his illegal businesses, Saer Khan has opened a second restaurant in Hungary in 2017. He has also opened at least five more restaurant in several countries. It is learned from credible sources that since 2018, a significant portion of Saer Khan’s businesses are owned by mega-terror outfit Hamas, through Palestinians in Hungary. Khan also has business relations with D-Company, a transnational crime gang operated under the leadership of notorious terrorist Dawood Ibrahim.

But Joe Biden’s State Department had no shame in enthusiastically swallowing the lies of terror-broadcast network Al Jazeera and had made the outrageous decision against the former chief of Bangladesh Army.

Reaction from Bangladesh side

Bangladesh’s Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen expressed Dhaka’s discontent over the US sanctions on several incumbent and former officials of elite anti-crime Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), summoning its ambassador to Bangladesh Earl R Miller to his office.

“Foreign Secretary Momen expressed Bangladesh’s disappointment that the decision was taken unilaterally by the US Administration without any prior consultation with the Government of Bangladesh” as the US envoy reached his office, a foreign ministry statement said.

The foreign secretary, it said, pointed out that the US decision came without any prior intimation while the issues that were cited for imposing the “designated sanctions” remained under active discussions, including under the framework of the regular institutional dialogues between the two sides.

He flagged that human rights violations and abuses were reported to be committed by wayward elements within the law enforcement agencies in many countries, including in the United States, but that would not justify singling out the high officials of any law enforcement agency for targeted sanctions.

Momen regretted that the US decided to “undermine” a Bangladesh government   agency that had been on the forefront of combating terrorism, drug trafficking and other heinous transnational crimes “that were considered to be shared priorities with successive US administrations”.

Moreover, he said, the allegations made against RAB over certain specific incidents had been explained, along with information on the corresponding justice and accountability measures undertaken, to “not just to the US Administration but also to a number of UN human rights mechanisms on multiple occasions”.

Momen stated that the US decision appeared to have been based more on unverified or unsubstantiated allegations of command responsibility than on the facts involved in connection with certain specific incidents that had taken place at the local level.

The Foreign Secretary further regretted that the decision targeting the Bangladesh officials was made in tandem with those concerning certain countries that stand alleged to have committed serious international crimes, like ‘text book example of ethnic cleansing’, by the UN and other concerned international bodies.

He said Bangladesh government remained committed to upholding the rule of law and human rights, and maintained a “zero tolerance” approach to any wrongdoings or aberrations by its law enforcement agencies.

“All uniformed services in Bangladesh followed a set of legal and administrative procedures to address any allegation of wrongdoing against any of their members, and that RAB was no exception in this regard”, the statement quoted Momen as telling the envoy.

The foreign secretary underscored the need for pursuing the pathway of dialogue, engagement and collaboration, instead of resorting to “naming and shaming” that proved to be a self-defeating exercise.

He highlighted that the observance of the 50th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between the two friendly countries next year should open up further avenues to enhance the breadth and dimensions of the existing partnership.

The statement said the US ambassador took note of the Bangladesh concerns raised by the Bangladesh and assured of conveying the same to Washington DC.

“He (Miller) concurred that the excellent multifaceted relations between two countries could be further deepened through established consultation mechanisms and high level visits (and) further expressed the willingness of the US Government to remain closely engaged with the Government of Bangladesh in the coming days on issues of mutual interest,” the statement said.

Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen called “very unfortunate” and “not fact-based” the US sanction on some incumbent and former Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) officials over alleged serious rights abuse and said Dhaka would review if was the outcome of any “geopolitics”.

“This (sanction) is very unfortunate … I would expect from USA more solid fact-based response”, he told reporters hours after the foreign ministry summoned US envoy in Dhaka Earl R Miller to convey Bangladesh’s “discontent” over the development.

Asked if he thought Bangladesh became a “victim of geopolitics” Momen said “it could be so” and added “we will review what is going on”.

Replying to a question whether the development could strain Bangladesh-US relations, the foreign minister said “I don’t think so” but quickly added that “it depends on the United States”.

Momen said the allegations of gross rights violations by the elite anti-crime police unit was not “based on facts” and said RAB was a disciplined institution which rather “has been securing human rights for the people of Bangladesh”.

On December 10, 2021, the US Departments of Treasury and of Department of State imposed human rights-related sanctions on RAB and seven current and former top officials of the elite force, including incumbent inspector general of police Benazir Ahmed, who previously commanded the elite force as its director general.

Replying another question whether the US sanction was influenced by the geopolitics, Momen said that they would analysis whether Bangladesh is victim out of it.

“(Now), I can only say sometimes the countries or governments which perform well often face attack. . . If you do well, sometimes it brings implication”, he said.

The foreign minister said the US claimed that RAB killed 600 people in 10 years but “we have no information who were killed” and the US decision should have been backed by facts.

He said six hundred thousand people disappear every year in the United States, while 1,000 are killed by their policemen in the line of duty, but none is punished.

Bangladesh foreign minister said the foreign secretary Masud Bin Momen earlier summoned US ambassador to Bangladesh Earl R Miller talked the matter with him.

“He (Miller) is also somewhat surprised (about the sanction)”, he said.

Meanwhile, Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan  Mahmud said the imposing a ban on others by the USA is one-sided and
ineffective as human rights are extremely violated even in the United States.

“The United States imposed a ban on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.  But later, they (USA) gave red carpet reception to him (Narendra Modi) which proved that such ban is futile,” he told reporters.

On February 26 this year, the United Nations (UN) urged the US government to stop the torture of police and racism, said the minister. An article, published by The Guardian in October this year, stated that 55 per cent of death between 1980 and 2018 in police custody remained ‘unreported’ or ‘miss levelled’, which means that the exact cause of those deaths was not revealed, he added.

Bangladesh information minister said the death rate of black people is three and half times more than white people though the black people are only 10 per cent of the total population in the USA. The international community did not forget the tragic incident of the last year when cops killed a black man suffocating him with knee, he added.

Why such sudden sanctions and actions?

The imposition of sanctions on several officials of Rapid Action Battalion as well declaring the former Chief of Army persona non grata is not any sudden decision. It is a result of massive persuasion and propaganda by the anti-Bangladesh elements, including Nobel laureate Mohammed Yunus, Bangladesh Nationalist Party and Jamaat-e-Islami. As we know, Yunus has personal rapport of scandalous Hillary Clinton and her husband as well as several influential members of the Democratic Party. Meanwhile, lobbyists hired by Bangladesh Nationalist Party and Jamaat-e-Islami have also bee making frantic bids in misleading the US administration as well as other western nations about the ruling party in Bangladesh.

According to credible sources, the same bloc of conspirators is continuing notorious bids in misleading the United Nations about the members of the United Nations Peace Keeping Force (UNPKF) from Bangladesh. Similarly, the same group of anti-Bangladesh elements are contacting several organizations such as the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) with the agenda of getting some “investigative reports on corruption, money-laundering and financial crime” by some key figures in the civil and military establishment as well as politicians.

We can only hope, the government and the state machinery will take immediate steps in effectively countering such heinous conspiracy of the vested interest groups. Unless such steps are taken forthwith, conspirators may succeed in doing much harm to Bangladesh’s image.

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Contents published under this byline are those created by the news team of WeeklyBlitz

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