US takes note of China envoy’s comment on Quad to Bangladesh

1The Daily Star May 12, 2021
Star Digital Report

The US has taken note of the statement of Chinese Ambassador to Bangladesh Li Jiming that Dhaka’s relations with Beijing will “substantially get damaged” if it joins Quad, a US-led initiative meant to ensure free and open Indo-Pacific.

“Well, we have taken note of that statement from the PRC ambassador to Bangladesh. What we would say is that we respect Bangladesh’s sovereignty, and we respect Bangladesh’s right to make foreign policy decisions for itself,” said Ned Price, US State Department Spokesman, in a media briefing today.

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He said the US has an incredibly strong relationship with Bangladesh and both the countries work closely with partners on a range of issues, from economic growth to climate change to humanitarian issues.

“And when it comes to the Quad, we’ve said this before, but the Quad, it’s an informal, essential, multilateral mechanism that right now conveys – convenes likeminded democracies – the United States, India, Australia, and Japan – to coordinate in the Indo-Pacific, and fundamentally, to push forward our goal of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.”

His remarks come after the Chinese Ambassador in Dhaka on May 10 said Quad is a military alliance aiming against China’s resurgence and its relationship with neighbours.

The ambassador said Quad is a “narrow-purposed” geopolitical clique, and Bangladesh should not join it as the country will not derive any benefit from the initiative.

“History has proved again and again such partnership surely damages our neighbours’ own social, economic development and people’s well-being,” Ambassador Li said.

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