Sanctions on Rab ‘unfortunate, imaginary’: Law Minister

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Dhaka, Dec 12: Terming the imposition of human rights-related sanctions on Rab personnel unfortunate and imaginary, Law Minister Anisul Huq on Sunday said the US authorities issued the sanctions without leaving any scope for self-defence.

“Those who believe in democracy and the rule of law have a responsibility and they should follow the due procedure and if any action is taken against any party then they must get the chance of self-defence. It’s truly unfortunate that the US imposed the sanctions without leaving any scope for self-defense,” he said.

The Law Minister came up with the remarks while talking to reporters after inaugurating the 26th Judicial Administration Training Course of Judges at Bangladesh Judicial Administration Training Institute in the city.

“The allegations which have been brought against RAB aren’t correct. Those’re imaginary and no extrajudicial killing has taken place in Bangladesh,” he said.

The United States on Friday imposed human rights-related sanctions on Benzir Ahmed, current Inspector General of the Bangladesh Police and former Director-General of Bangladesh’s Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), and six other individuals on the occasion of International Human Rights Day.

The US Department of State announced visa restrictions on Benazir Ahmed, which it says, due to his “involvement in gross violations of human rights” making him ineligible for entry into the United States.

RAB as an entity, Benzir Ahmed, and six other officials were designated by the Department of the Treasury under the Global Magnitsky sanctions programme in connection with serious human rights abuse, said the US Department of State.

Regarding Khaleda’s plea seeking permission to go abroad for treatment, the Minister said, “Please wait and you will soon get the answer.”