State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam has said Bangladesh hopes that the new US visa policy that aims to promote democratic elections in the country will not be applied arbitrarily.
Dhaka was considering Washington’s announcement in the context of the government’s unequivocal commitment to holding free and fair elections at all levels with the aim of upholding the country’s democratic process, the state minister told reporters on Thursday.
However, the government hoped that the policy would be applied objectively rather arbitrarily, he added.
“I hope arbitrary applications of the new visa policy is not their intention.”
When asked how Bangladesh was looking at the matter, he said: “It is not a matter of happiness or regret. We see this as a positive because they have done this in keeping with the prime minister’s promise of free and fair elections. We as a friendly country are looking at this as a positive thing.”
US Secretary of State on Wednesday tweeted he was announcing a new visa policy to promote free and fair elections. “Under this policy, we can impose visa restrictions on individuals and their immediate family members if they are responsible for, or complicit in, undermining the democratic election process in Bangladesh.”