October 5, 2023, 6:10 am

Diplomatic correspondent

2022-09-23 06:28:24 BdST

Genocide committed by Pakistani military in 1971 is the most heinous crimes in human history

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has said that the Genocide of Bangladesh committed in 1971 by the Pakistani military is one of the most heinous crimes in human history.

“We do not know of another instance of such barbarism of such intensity and mayhem,” he said adding that the Bangladesh genocide is yet to be recognised by the international community to the extent the genocide warrants.

The Foreign Minister was addressing at a day-long seminar on ‘Remember and Recognise: The Case of Bangladesh Genocide of 1971’ on Wednesday (Sept 21).

The High Commission for Bangladesh in Canada and the Bangabandhu Centre for Bangladesh Studies (BCBS) in Canada, Liberation War Museum, Bangladesh, Genocide Studies Centre, University of Dhaka, Refugees Resilience Centre and Rotary Club Canada jointly organised a day-long seminar on remembering and recognition of the case of Bangladesh Genocide on 1971 at the Human Rights Museum, Winipeg, Canada.

Some members of the victim families of the Genocide also spoke at the seminar.

Foreign Minister Momen added that on 25 March 1971 the Pakistan junta undertook the cruel and enormous mayhem of innocent civilian people of Bangladesh in order to suppress the nation’s democratic aspirations by sheer force of fear and terror.

He informed that Bangladesh declared 25 March as the Genocide Day and Bangladesh is working for getting the date recognized as the International Genocide Day by all the countries in the world.

The seminar was held in a hybrid format where the virtual discussion session was held where Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen spoke through a video massage as the Cheif Guest and Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen spoke from New York virtually as a Special Guest. High Commissioner of Bangladesh to Canada and the Chief Patron of the BCBS in Canada Khalilur Rahman and Kawser Ahmed, Chief Coordinator of the BCBS, Canada, gave introductory remarks.

The Foreign Secretary Ambassador said that 1971 has been the most significant year in the history of Bangladesh.

“In one hand, Bangladesh achieved her independence in this very year. On the other hand, the nation experienced the ugliest chapter of brutality, atrocities, indiscriminate killing, raping, looting, and arson to achieve independence. And the world witnessed another genocide within three decades of the Second World War,” Masud Bin Momen said.

Gregory Stanton of Genocide Watch gave the keynote speech. David C Newman, Rotarian and Peace-Builder and Canadian Patron of the BCBS, James Waller, Cohen Professor of the Holocaust and Genocide Studies of Keene State College, New Hampshire, USA, Prof Adam Muller, Director of Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Manitoba, spoke at the seminar.

In addition, John Adam of University of British Colombia, Vancouver, Canada, gave a verbal illustration of the Bangladesh Genocide which pictures the heinous crimes committed in Bangladesh in 1971.

Joining virtually, Mofidul Hoque, Trustee, Liberation War Museum of Bangladesh, and Director of Centre for the Study of Genocide and Justice explained the case of genocide in Bangladesh in 1971. His statement was followed by presentations by post-genocide generation researchers.

Prof. Imtiaz Ahmed, Director of Center for Genocide Studies, University of Dhaka, presented a paper delineating the Bangladesh genocide. He said that the Bangladesh Genocide fulfills all criteria declared by the UN to get the global recognition.

Prof. Nuzhat Chowdhury described the abduction of her father Dr. Alim Chowdhury by collaborators of Pakistan military, the Rajakars, and his subsequent brutal killing just before the independence of Bangladesh.

Towheed Reza Noor, son of Sirajuddin Hossain, Asif Muneir, son of Professor Munir Chowdhury, Meghna Guhathakurta, daughter of Prof Jotirmoy Guhathakurta, also spoke on the occasion

In his remarks, High Commissioner Khalilur Rahman highlighted how Bangladesh’s Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman led Bengalese towards independence and in a way defined Bengali nationalism.

The High Commissioner narrated a few instances of the uncompromising stance of this great leader in safeguarding interests and dignity of the nation. He underscored the need to overcome the malice of backwardness, sectarianism and personal interests to become golden hands, worthy of Sonar Bangla, that the Prime Minister is steering the country towards.

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