Dhaka, May 11 (newsin.asia/Prothom Alo): The Bangladesh Foreign Minister, A.K.Abdul Momen, on Tuesday asked foreign envoys based in Dhaka to maintain decency and decorum when speaking in public.
“FM Dr.Momen told the media here that Bangladesh is a sovereign country which will determine the course of its foreign policy in the interest of its people. He urged foreign envoys in Dhaka to maintain decency and decorum while speaking in public,” the Bangladesh Foreign Ministry tweeted.
Though Momen did not name any envoy, it was obvious that he was referring to the Chinese Ambassador Li Jiming’s statement to the media on May 10 that Sino-Bangladesh relations will be “substantially damaged” if Bangladesh joins the ‘Quad’ which he described as an “anti-China group” comprising the US, Japan, India and Australia.
Ambassador Li Jiming said that the Quad is not an economic group as it claimed to be, but is an anti-China security group. He quoted Japan and the US as saying so.
Asked by Prothom Alo’s s Diplomatic Correspondent Raheed Ejaz to comment on the prospects of Bangladesh joining the Quad, Li said that the Quad is a “small group” which, though portraying itself as an economic group, is actually an anti-China security group.
The Ambassador then went on to warn: “It will not be a good idea for Bangladesh to participate in this group. Bangladesh-China bilateral relations will be substantially damaged if Bangladesh joins this small group.”
Reacting to this Momen said: ” The Chinese ambassador has talked about his country’s stand. The organisation he was talking about has not approached us as yet. This was a bit of overstepping. But we have nothing special to say about this.”
The minister further said generally China does not interfere in the affairs of other countries.
“I never heard them talking so aggressively to anyone. This is a matter of regret. Another country is trying to dictate what we should or should not do. We’ll do whatever is beneficial for the country.”
The foreign minister further said the government did not expect such behaviour from China.
Responding to a question about whether any message would be given to the Chinese ambassador for his remarks, the foreign minister said: “We do not tell the media about what we do. We have ways of doing things. We know what we’ll do. We can’t reveal everything.”