Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen abruptly cancelled his visit to New Delhi on the day he was supposed to arrive as the Chief Guest for the Indian Ocean Dialogue and the Delhi Dialogue. This last-minute change of plans was done by the minister due to a sudden 'increase in demand at home.'
The dialogues between India and Bangladesh were supposed to be held at the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra in New Delhi for two consecutive days, starting December 13, for which Abdul Momen was supposed to arrive on Thursday, December 11.
"I had to cancel my trip to New Delhi as I have to participate in the 'Buddijibi Debosh' and 'Bijoy Debosh' and more so as our State Minister is out of the country in Madrid and our Foreign Secretary is in the Hague," Momen said.
Claiming that there was no one 'back at home' to participate in the 'Buddijibi Debosh' and 'Bijoy Debosh' (which celebrates the victory of the allied forces over Pakistan in the Bangladesh Liberation War of1971), Abdul Momen bailed out of his New Delhi trip last minute saying that he will be sending his DG instead.
On Thursday, the Bangladesh Foreign Minister had reacted to the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill being passed by both houses of the Indian parliament, dispelling the notion that minorities faced persecution in the country.
Maintaining that there was “exemplary” communal harmony in Bangladesh he hoped that India would not take steps affecting the friendly relationship between the two countries.
“There are very few countries where communal harmony is as good as in Bangladesh. If he (Home Minister Amit Shah) stayed in Bangladesh for a few months, he would see exemplary communal harmony in our country," he said.
The 6th Indian Ocean Dialogue on December 13 is based on the theme of - "Indo-Pacific: Re-imagining the Indian Ocean through an Expanded Geography". The Delhi Dialogue XI will start on the evening of December 13 and will be going on till the evening of December 14.
The theme for the Delhi Dialogue is "Advancing Partnership in Indo-Pacific". Other guests and dignitaries include special Envoys, Deputy Ministers, and senior officials from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Thailand, as well as the Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN at the Delhi Dialogue as well as the Foreign Secretaries of Seychelles and Maldives, the IORA Secretary-General and senior officials from South Africa and UAE.