United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet has arrived in Dhaka on a four-day visit as Bangladesh looks forward to having a “constructive dialogue” with her for the promotion and protection of human rights. Bangladesh hopes to benefit from an objective appreciation of the High Commissioner regarding the achievements of the country, despite challenges.
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Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen received Michelle Bachelet at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport on August 14 upon her arrival. Bachelet, who was an elected president of Chile on two occasions, is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on August 17. Apart from her meetings with the Cabinet Members of the government including Foreign Minister Momen on August 14, she will interact with the National Human Rights Commission, youth representatives, leaders of civil society organisations (CSOs) and the academia during her stay in Dhaka. She would also pay homage to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at Bangabandhu Memorial Museum on August 15.
The top executive of the UN Human Rights body will also have the opportunity to interact with the forcibly displaced Rohingya people during her trip to Cox’s Bazar, through which she would be equipped with concrete information to press hard the agenda for the repatriation of the Rohingya to their ancestral homeland in the Rakhine State of Myanmar.
Ahead of her visit, Foreign Ministry mentioned in a press release that Bangladesh has been closely working with the UN in the field of human rights; and this visit would be an important occasion to highlight Bangladesh’s national perspective and the Government’s sincere efforts to protect and promote human rights of the people, including through updating domestic legal framework, creating awareness and sensitizing the implementing agencies.
This is indeed important in the national context, and in particular the economic development amidst the pandemic and other evolving crises, the maintenance of peace and security of the people, and constraints like the Rohingya crisis and the adverse effect of climate change, are taken into due consideration in assessing the human rights situation of the country, the foreign ministry said.
The visiting UN High Commissioner remains well aware of the plethora of achievements of Bangladesh in the human rights domain, including through the treaty-body reporting as well as through other mechanisms, Bangladesh says. Thus, Bangladesh hoped that the Chief of UN human rights mechanism would witness by herself how the country is doing miracles to keep on track their development journey; integrating human rights into it.