US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said that despite concerns about arrests of political opponents in Bangladesh, it is America’s responsibility to work with the country’s government. He made this comment at the office’s regular press briefing on Thursday local time.
In the briefing, a journalist asked Miller, ‘We saw in your latest press note about Bangladesh that America is interested in working with Bangladesh in the field of security. These areas include counter-terrorism, border security, cyber security, maritime security and regional stability. But how is it possible to work with the new government in Bangladesh without formally welcoming the Prime Minister (Sheikh Hasina)?’
In response, the spokesperson of the US State Department said, ‘I would say, we have this kind of relationship all over the world. We have expressed concern about the elections in Bangladesh, we have also expressed concern about Dharpak. But that does not mean that we do not have the responsibility (opportunity) to work with the (Bangladesh) government. It is in both cases. We can cooperate on a priority basis on issues of mutual interest as well as on issues of mutual concern.’
The briefing also highlighted the fear of more Rohingya infiltration into Bangladesh due to violence in Myanmar. Miller was asked about this, ‘You know that there is a war going on in Myanmar now between the junta and other parties. And more Rohingyas and some Myanmar army personnel entered Bangladesh with helicopters. Do you have any comments on the situation there?’
However, Miller did not give any relevant answer to this question.