Washington DC, April 8 :

Foreign Secretary Ambassador Masud Bin Momen met US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman yesterday at the US
Department of State in Washington DC and discussed various issues related to the bilateral interests with her.
At the outset of the meeting, the US Deputy Secretary of State appreciated Bangladesh for its six percent growth during the
pandemic situation, robust role in UN peacekeeping, climate change actions and in the Rohingya crisis.
Foreign Secretary Masud thanked the US government for providing 61 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine, and elaborated
the government’s measures to strike balance between life and livelihood during the pandemic.
The Bangladesh Foreign Secretary raised the issue of sanctions on RAB, and expressed Bangladesh’s concern that this might
undermine Bangladesh’s efforts to combat terrorism, violent extremism and transnational crime. He urged that, pending the legal
procedure of delisting of the organization and individuals as well as remedial measures that have been undertaken by the government,
the US may consider providing temporary waiver for RAB as an institution.
In response to queries from the US side, the Foreign Secretary elaborated the context of the enactment of the Digital Security
Act (DSA) to combat cybercrimes including those aimed at undermining religious harmony and victimizing women and children.
He informed that the government is working with the EU to reassess the law and identify possible loopholes. On the labour
issue, in response of US queries, he explained that the government has all intentions to improve the labour situation as per the
roadmaps undertaken with the ILO and the EU, and proposed that the US can also join.
Deputy Secretary Sherman appreciated Bangladesh government’s willingness to address these issues, while also stressing
early implementation of the reform process, especially regarding trade union rights in private sectors.
The two sides also discussed the situation in Ukraine and its global implications on the Indo-Pacific Strategy, and on security
sector cooperation.
The US Deputy Secretary of State underscored the importance of international rule-based order in the maritime domain, and
both sides agreed that further works can be done together in the area of harnessing the 'blue economy'.
Foreign Secretary Masud also discussed the possibility of highest-level visit on the occasion of the 50th year of diplomatic
relations, and also on the issue of deportation of Rashed Chowdhury, the self-confessed convicted killer of Father of the Nation
Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, from the USA.
Foreign Secretary Masud also met Julieta Valls Noyes, US Assistant Secretary of State of the Bureau of Population, Refugee
and Migration (PRM) of the Department of State, and discussed the Rohingya issue.
The Bangladesh Foreign Secretary stressed that the return of the displaced Rohingyas is the best solution of the crisis. The
US Assistant Secretary expressed her country’s willingness to remain deeply engaged, and emphasized the need for education,
livelihood etc. of the displaced Rohingyas.
In this regard, Assistant Secretary Julieta informed that her upcoming visit is a part of the US’s reassessment process in this
Foreign Secretary Masud underscored that visit at the highest level may be agreed upon on the occasion of the 50th
anniversary of the diplomatic relations. He also discussed the sanctions on RAB and related individuals and proposed whether the
sanctions on RAB can be partially lifted.
They also touched upon the global impact of Ukraine situation, and also on the Rohingya crisis. They also discussed the
Digital Security Act, and Bangladesh’s efforts to reexamine the law. Senior Director Guha lauded Bangladesh’s keenness to engage
with the US on human rights issues.
Bangladesh Foreign Secretary also raised the issue of the extradition of the self-confessed killer of the Father of the Nation
from the USA.