British HC asks all parties fully consider effects of their actions

British High Commissioner Robert W Gibson yesterday called upon all political parties in Bangladesh to fully consider the effects of their actions and refrain from causing further damage to the country’s national interest.
He made the call in a statement that he read out before the waiting journalists after an hour-long meeting with BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia at her Gulshan office where she has been staying since January 3.
“I also urge all parties to consider confidence building measures that would defuse the current tension in the country and allow normal life to resume,” said the British envoy.He expressed his concern over the violence saying that the extent of the current violence and disruption to the lives of all people in Bangladesh is distressing and deplorable.
Gibson hoped that further confidence building measures could be taken that would ultimately break the habitual cycle of violence and disruption that appears to characterise elections in Bangladesh and which would allow all legitimate political activity to take place peacefully.
He said the UK is committed to the future stability, development and prosperity of Bangladesh in which we are and will remain close partners.
The British High Commissioner said that he offered his personal sympathies to the BNP chairperson over the loss of her son Arafat Rahman Koko discussed the current situation in Bangladesh.
BNP chairperson’s adviser Sabih Udidn Ahmed, who was present at the meeting, refrained from saying anything beyond Gibson’s statement.
Insiders said Gibson had also a brief meeting with Khaleda Zia without the presence of any aides. But the content of the discussion was not available.
Sources however said that the party chairperson has raised the issues of violation of human rights, extra judicial killing and repression on her alliance leaders and workers by using law enforcing agencies and large scale filing of “false cases” implicating thousands of opposition activists.
The meeting began at 5:00pm and lasted for over one hour. – Staff Reporter