For the last two years, Biden administration has been exhibiting undue hostility towards Awami League government and been collaborating Islamist forces such as Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) in returning to power thus turning the country into Washington’s vessel state. The 2021 sanctions of Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) and recently announced visa policy for Bangladesh are part of Biden administration’s dangerous agenda of turning a secularist Bangladesh into an Islamic or sharia state and establish military base at St. Martin Island, which would directly pose threat to Bangladesh’s neighboring nations.
At this junction, South African President Matamela Cyril Ramaposha during his meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in Geneva said, Bangladesh is likely to get the membership of BRICS soon. Following this meeting, briefing reporters, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Moment said that recently BRICS bank has invited Bangladesh as a guest. In the future, BRICS would invite Bangladesh to join it, he added.
“Their conference will be held in the August next in South Africa and the Prime Minister would join it”, said Momen.
BRICS now has five members – Brazil, India, China, South Africa and Russia. In the future, eight more countries would get membership as they have invited Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Indonesia among them.
“This will be another area of our financing. It will be good for us as we need money”, said the foreign minister.
He said that the Prime Minister requested South Africa to open a mission in Bangladesh to enhance bilateral cooperation.
Earlier, President of Malta Dr George Vella also called on the Bangladesh Prime Minister. Sheikh Hasina requested him to open a mission in Dhaka. She also requested Malta to import RMG products and pharmaceuticals items.
Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Wenbin, responding to question from The Global times has expressed Beijing support towards Awami League government.
Global Times asked Wang Wenbin, “We have noted that recently Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said on several occasions that she found US sanctions on Bangladesh’s Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) puzzling and that sanctions were like a game. “It has the power to topple the government in any country”, she said. Bangladesh is not afraid of sanctions and she has instructed the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Planning to stop buying anything from countries that impose sanctions on Bangladesh. What’s China’s comment?”
In response, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Wenbin said: “We have noted the recent remarks by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Indeed, while turning a blind eye to its own racial discrimination, gun violence and drug proliferation problems, a certain country has long been interfering in the internal affairs of Bangladesh and many other developing countries under the pretext of democracy and human rights. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina spoke not just the strong position of the Bangladeshi people, but also the mind of large part of the international community, especially the developing world.
“China and Bangladesh have been traditional friendly neighbors. We firmly support Bangladesh in safeguarding its sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity, upholding independent domestic and foreign policies, and pursuing a development path that suits its national realities. We stand ready to work together with Bangladesh and other countries to oppose all forms of hegemonism and power politics, uphold the UN-centered international system, the international order underpinned by international law and the basic norms governing international relations based on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and build a community with a shared future for mankind”.
French news agency AFP asked the Chinese Foreign Minister, “US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said yesterday that institutions like the IMF and the World Bank reflect American values and serve as a counterweight to unsustainable lending from others like China. She also said she doesn’t think China should qualify for the World Bank’s loans. Do you have any response to Yellen’s comments?”
In response, Wang Wenbin said: “The IMF and the World Bank are multilateral financial institutions and platforms that reflect the trend towards greater democracy in international relations and advance international cooperation on the basis of fully taking into account the interests of all member states. The IMF is not the “International Monetary Fund of the United States”, neither is the World Bank for that matter.
“China has always carried out investment and financing cooperation with developing countries in keeping with international rules and the principle of openness and transparency. We never attach any political strings to such cooperation, nor do we seek any selfish political interests. We have been helping developing countries relieve debt burdens, and made the biggest contribution to implementing the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative.
I would also like to say that according to World Bank statistics, multilateral financial institutions and commercial creditors account for more than 80 percent of the sovereign debt of developing countries. They are the biggest source of stress on developing countries in terms of debt payment. Since last year, the US has launched unprecedented massive interest rate hikes, making the debt problems of certain countries even worse and sending more shock waves through the global financial market. The US needs to take concrete steps to help developing countries, engage multilateral financial institutions in being part of the solution to debt treatment, rather than introduce geopolitical confrontation into multilateral financial institutions”.
In response to another question from Turkish media outlet Anadolu Agency about US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s June 18 visit to China and his telephonic conversation with State Councilor and Foreign Minister Qin Gang, Wang Wenbin said: State Councilor Qin Gang had a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken at US request this morning. State Councilor Qin pointed out that since early this year, the China-US relations have encountered new difficulties and challenges, and the responsibility for this situation is clear. China has viewed and handled this relationship under the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation proposed by President Xi Jinping.
“State Councilor Qin stated China’s strong position on its core concerns, including the Taiwan question. He stressed that the US needs to respect China’s concerns, stop interfering in China’s internal affairs, and stop undermining China’s sovereignty, security and development interests in the name of competition. It is hoped that the US will take concrete actions to deliver on the important common understandings between the two presidents in their meeting in Bali and the relevant commitments of the US, work with China to effectively manage differences, promote exchanges and cooperation, stabilize the relationship from further deterioration and bring it back to the track of healthy and stable development”.
For the Biden administration, it is important to understand, China under the magnanimous leadership of President Xi Jinping has viewed and handled US-China relationship under the principles of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation. Washington needs to maintain similar policy in its relations with Bangladesh and refrain from unnecessarily meddling into Bangladesh’s domestic issues. Biden administration should note, its hostile policy towards developing nations in particular is jeopardizing America’s greater interests and harming its friendly relations with the countries like Bangladesh.