Sunday, February 16, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Shut terror camps, India asks Bangladesh
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 15
India and Bangladesh today made an ambitious bid to cross the hump in their bilateral relations, though the two sides maintained their previously-stated positions on the most important irritant in their ties — the presence of terrorist training camps and anti-India insurgent groups on Bangladeshi soil.

The visiting Bangladesh Foreign Minister, Mohammad Morshed Khan, who today had talks with Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, was categorically told about the three major Indian concerns: (i) the use of Bangladeshi territory by terrorist outfits to launch proxy war against India, (ii) continued illegal immigration of Bangladeshis into India, and (iii) western intelligence reports about the presence of Al-Qaida cadres in Bangladesh and their linkages with South-East Asian cells of the Al-Qaida.

The message from the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister to Mr Khan on all points mentioned above was “firm and strong” and the visiting minister was told categorically that if Dhaka wanted to improve bilateral relations it would have to close down all terrorist camps and stop using its territory from becoming a base for anti-Indian activities.

According to well-placed sources in South Block, Mr Khan stuck to his country’s previously-stated position on all three points: that nothing of the sort is happening in Bangladesh.

Nonetheless, there was a forward movement as Mr Khan has assured the Indian leadership of Dhaka’s intentions to keep engaged with India on resolving all differences and he even went to the extent of offering to take a delegation of diplomats to see for themselves whether any terrorist camps existed in Bangladesh.

Besides, Foreign Secretary Kanwal Sibal is scheduled to visit Dhaka in the first week of April.

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
123 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |