Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen. Photo: Collected
Bangladesh has conveyed to the United Nations that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is "determined to hold a free and fair election" but will not tolerate burning of public and private properties and burning of human lives in the name of demonstration that the opposition frequently perpetrates.
"We also expect UN officials to maintain highest standard of non-partisanship, integrity and objectivity to uphold UN credibility and respect," Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen wrote in a letter sent to Earle Courtenay Rattray, head of office of the UN Secretary General.
If their reports are based on falsity and without objectivity and if not fact-based, Momen wrote, they may lose their credibility that would be a bad omen for the UN system.
"In the context of the undue, unwarranted and vested political pressure that we are facing from different comers ahead of our upcoming National Parliamentary Election, we hope that United Nations system, including its Secretariat, agencies and country office, would play a constructive and collaborative role to assist Bangladesh to remain persistent in its development trajectory," the foreign minister wrote in his letter.
The letter was written on November 19 and the Permanent Mission of Bangladesh to the UN transmitted it to the UN on November 20.
Momen wrote that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is a "crusader of democracy" and she went through lots of pain to guarantee the right to vote, right to food and right to a decent life, as per the letter.
During her 15-year tenure, the foreign minister said, Sheikh Hasina conducted thousands of elections - by-elections, national elections, regional elections, mayoral elections - and except a microscopic few, all were free and fair.
The foreign minister mentioned that Bangladesh is a firm believer of promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedom of its citizens, and beyond, and remains optimistic that the United Nations system would continue to act as a trusted partner in Bangladesh's efforts to ensure a peaceful, just, inclusive and prosperous future for all, at national, regional and international levels.
He said Bangladesh is a leader in upholding democracy, human rights, justice and human dignity. "It is the only country in the world that shed 3 million lives to establish democracy, human rights and justice."
Momen said they maintain their position as a strong voice in favor of the maintenance of international peace and security through peaceful means.
"Bangladesh, a proactive and supportive Member State, also has high expectations that the United Nations system would continue its cooperation and assistance in our national journey towards the political progress and socio-economic emancipation of our people," the foreign minister wrote in the letter.