Shafik Rehman to finally get UK’s consular assistance

Shafik rehman

The UK high commission in Dhaka has got permission from the government to offer consular assistance to detained senior journalist Shafik Rehman.

Shafik is entitled to consular assistance, which is legal services offered to citizens arrested on foreign soil, due to his British citizenship.
The journalist was earlier denied consular services on the plea of his dual citizenship.

However, officials concerned said, the home ministry eventually found that although Shafik Rehman had citizenship in both Bangladesh and UK, he had never sought dual citizenship.

He may now be given consular assistance as per article 36(1) of the Vienna convention on consular relation 1963, the official pointed out.

According to home ministry officials, foreign minister AH Mahmood Ali received a letter from the UK minister of state for foreign and Commonwealth office, Hugo Swire, who requested that people from the UK high commission should be allowed to meet Shafik Rehman.

A spokesperson from the UK high commission said they wanted to help Shafik Rehman and his family. The official added that they were concerned as they had not been allowed to do so as yet.

The 81-year-old journalist’s family calmed that they requested help from the UK government as Shafik Rehman is currently sick.

On 16 April, detectives detained Shafik Rehman, former editor of the Bangla daily Jai Jai Din, from his Eskaton Garden residence in the city.

He was shown arrested in a case relating to conspiracy filed with Paltan police station on 3 August 2015. He was implicated with charges of attempt to abduct and kill Sajib Wazed Joy, prime minister Sheikh Hasina’s son and information and communications technology adviser.

Source: Prothom Alo

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