To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what discussions his Department has had with the government of Bangladesh on tackling levels of violence against minority Hindu communities in that country.
22 July 2016
The British Government is extremely concerned by the increase in extremist-related violence against a number of minority groups including Hindus in Bangladesh since September 2015. The former Prime Minister, my Rt Hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr Cameron) most recently talked to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh about countering extremism in the margins of the G7 meeting in Japan on 27 May. The former Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my Rt Hon. Friend the Member for East Devon (Mr Swire) raised this with Foreign Minister Ali on 5 July. The British High Commissioner regularly discusses these issues with Bangladesh government ministers.
We welcome Prime Minister Hasina’s “zero tolerance” approach towards terrorism, but this must be implemented in a way that fully respects the international rights standards that Bangladesh has signed up to and which, as a member of both the Commonwealth and the UN Human Rights Council, it has pledged to uphold.