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Indo-Bangla home minister-level meet

Maritime security issue likely to dominate talks

Deepak Acharjee, Dhaka

The issue of the maritime security in the Bay of Bengal is likely to dominate the home minister-level talks between Bangladesh and India to be held in India on April 1.

At the same time, drug and human trafficking, land boundary agreement, Coordinated Border Management Plan (CBMP), security-related issues like border killings by the Border Security Force (BSF) of India and fake currency notes would be discussed at the high-level talks, sources in the home ministry said.

“In the meeting, Bangladesh and India are likely to discuss the maintenance of maritime security through the two coastal forces—Bangladesh Coast Guard and the Indian Coast Guard—to counter unconventional threats, such as the trafficking of humans and smuggling of illegal arms, drugs and narcotics, and to prevent piracy,” he said.

“The Bangladesh government has articulated a ‘zero tolerance’ policy towards terrorism including maritime violence,” he also said.

“For ensuring maritime security, there is need for cooperation and sharing of information between the coast guards of the two friendly countries,” he added.

About the LBA, the official said that a two-kilometre stretch in an area adjacent to the Muhuri river under Feni district is yet to be demarcated due to a ‘difference of interpretation’ by the two sides. So, the LBA has been put on the agenda of the high-powered meeting, he added. Sources said arms smuggling and human trafficking were likely to be discussed broadly and the holding of director general-level meetings between the narcotics departments of Bangladesh and India would also feature in the talks.

About security-related issues, the sources said that both the parties were likely to discuss the enhancement of cooperation towards capacity building, including training of their law enforcement agencies and the sharing of information.

The sources also said the government was going to enact the Bangladesh Marine Zone Act, 2019, to declare and determine maritime zones and suppress piracy, armed robbery, and theft, and make provisions for punishment.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has prepared a draft of the Bangladesh Marine Zone Act, 2019 and the ministry has taken the opinion of ministries and divisions in this regard.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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