Apologise or face legal action for comments on Khaleda’s ‘Saudi assets’: BNP to PM Hasina

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Dhaka, December 08: BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Friday said that they will take legal action against Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina if she doesn’t withdraw her statement that the party’s chief Khaleda Zia and her family have ‘amassed wealth abroad illegally’.BNP Secretary General said the party will not act against Hasina if she apologises for the comments she made at the Ganabhaban news conference.

“The prime minister in the press conference (Thursday) revealed a flimsy story of Khaleda Zia having assets smuggled out of Bangladesh,” he said at a media briefing at the party’s Naya Paltan headquarters in Dhaka.

“This is utterly false, imaginary, politically motivated and baseless,” Mirza Fakhrul said.

The BNP leader said Hasina’s comments aimed to undermine the image of their chief.

“Don’t try to mislead the people by publicising false information,” Mirza Fakhrul said, addressing Hasina.

“Apologise for making these defamatory comments in public. Otherwise, we will have to take legal action,” he added.

Asked what legal action the BNP would take, “We have said there must be an apology and the comments must be withdrawn. If they don’t do so, we will take action in line with the law.”

On being asked whether the BNP would take the action against Hasina, Mirza Fakhrul said, “Our reaction is to the prime minister’s comments. I’ve named her in the beginning of my speech.”

While briefing the media on Thursday, the prime minister accused Khaleda and her family of having illegal assets in Saudi Arabia.

Pointing out that only two newspapers and as many TV stations covered the issue, she expressed ire at other media for not carrying reports on it.

A few media outlets in Bangladesh recently reported that anti-graft investigation in Saudi Arabia revealed that Khaleda and members of her family have assets in the Kingdom.

In these stories, the news outlets cited reports by ‘Global Intelligence Network’ and ‘Canadian TV channel The National or GIN’, but no media with these names have been found on the internet.

A programme on Canada’s state media is titled ‘The National’, but no report on Khaleda was found there.

GIN is a business intelligence agency of Symantec, not a media outlet.