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USAID ADMINISTRATOR MARK GREEN’S MEETING WITH M.D. SHAHIDUL HAQUE, FOREIGN SECRETARY OF
THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF BANGLADESH
May 17, 2018
Dhaka, May 17, 2018 — On Wednesday, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Mark Green met with M.D. Shahidul Haque, Foreign Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh in Dhaka. Administrator Green thanked the Government of Bangladesh for generously hosting and assisting nearly 700,000 Rohingya refugees who have fled violence and persecution in Burma since August 2017, and underscored the U.S. commitment to the humanitarian response to the crisis. The Administrator noted the announcement yesterday of $44 million in additional U.S. assistance for the Rohingya and other vulnerable populations in Bangladesh and Burma. The United States has contributed nearly $300 million to assist displaced people in and from Burma since Fiscal Year 2017.
Administrator Green noted he will be traveling to Burma later this week, where he will raise the urgent need for the Government to take steps to end the crisis. The Administrator also reiterated that any repatriation or relocation of the Rohingya must be safe, voluntary, dignified, and based on informed consent.
The Administrator and Foreign Secretary discussed the strong partnership between the United States and Bangladesh, including USAID’s long history in the country. The Administrator also expressed his commitment to continuing that cooperation, including USAID’s support for civil society, and celebrated Bangladesh’s recently meeting all three criteria required for graduation from least developed country (LDC) status in 2024. Administrator Green voiced the U.S. Government’s expectations that Bangladesh fulfill its commitment to hold free, fair, credible, and participatory elections that reflect the will of the Bangladeshi people. He highlighted the importance of preserving the rights of free speech and assembly, as well as a free and independent press, before, during, and after the upcoming national voting later this year.
The Administrator also asked for the Government of Bangladesh’s continued assistance in prosecuting those responsible for the brutal killing in 2016 of Xulhaz Mannan, a USAID employee.
Attending the meeting were U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Bernicat; Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugee, and Migration Mark Storella; and Senior Deputy Assistant USAID Administrator for Asia Gloria Steele.