Both sides discussing a range of bilateral issues that will strengthen Dhaka-London relationship
The fourth strategic dialogue between Bangladesh and the United Kingdom began in London on Thursday.
Issues related to climate change, Rohingya crisis, regional crisis with particular reference to situation in Afghanistan and removal of Bangladesh from the UK’s Covid-19 red list are expected to dominate the agenda.
The Bangladesh delegation is headed by Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen while his British counterpart, Foreign and Commonwealth Permanent Under-Secretary Philip Barton is leading his side. The third dialogue was held in May 2019 in Dhaka.
Both sides will have detailed discussions on a range of bilateral issues that will strengthen the ties between the two countries.
The issues to be discussed include post-Brexit relationship, especially trade and commerce, vaccine, investment, education and skills, good governance and human rights, the future development partnership, migration, and security and defence cooperation.
They will also talk about regional and international matters of mutual interest.
In the lead up to COP26 to be held in Scotland in November, the issue of climate change will dominantly feature during the talks. Dhaka will share its agenda for COP26 and will ask London, the chair of the United Nations event, to do more for Bangladesh in its fight to address the challenges posed by climate change.
Bangladesh will also ask the UK, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, to do all it can to help solve the protracted Rohingya crisis, a serious cause for concern for the country as well as the region.
UK raises rights concerns
The UK raised concerns over several issues reflected in the FCDO Annual Human Rights Report, including the impact of the Digital Security Act, political space, and extra-judicial killings, according to a press release issued by the British high commission in Dhaka on Friday evening.
Both countries agreed on the importance of free and fair elections, on vibrant civil society to promote accountable governance and institutions, and on freedom of expression and religion, it said.