Dhaka-London terror link charge an ‘imperialist conspiracy’

April 11th, 2008 - 1:46 pm ICT by admin  

Dhaka, April 11 (IANS) The British contention that that there are links between terror groups in Dhaka and London is “an imperialist conspiracy” aimed at declaring Bangladesh “a failed state”, a civic group here has charged. The caretaker government should have refuted the observation made by British Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, who concluded his visit to Bangladesh Wednesday, the recently formed National Interest Group said.

Smith had said “yes” at a news conference when asked if Britain suspected Bangladesh’s banned outfit Jama’at Ul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) of having such terror links.

The charge was baseless, the group said in a statement signed by Mahmoodur Rahman, who was energy advisor in Khaleda Zia’s government that shared power with an Islamist alliance led by Jamaat-e-Islami (JeI), the New Age newspaper said Friday.

The group believes that the remarks by Smith without proof were part of an intrigue played by Western countries, the paper added.

Referring to the propagandist attitude towards Iraq and Afghanistan to portray them as terrorist nations, Rahman’s statement said people from across the world were “well aware of such baseless comments”.

In an editorial, The Daily Star newspaper, however, called Smith’s comments “candid”.

“Her unambiguous statement that there are links between terrorist outfits in Bangladesh and Britain is quite a revelation coming from a senior British government functionary. The reason is simple: rarely in the past has a British cabinet minister, or for that matter any high profile Western visitor, been as candid as Ms. Smith,” the editorial said.

It supported the British-Bangladesh move to have a high level body to share information and work out counter-terrorism measures.

The information available should be shared with the public to create awareness about the role of the “forces of extremist disorder”, the newspaper said.

British Foreign Secretary David Miliband was here in February when this issue was discussed.

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