Bangladesh has not yet got international recognition of March 25 as Genocide Day as diplomats concerned could not properly raise the issue with the United Nations, said liberation war minister AKM Mozammel Haque.
“It was not possible to get recognition of March 25, 1971 as Genocide Day due to a mistake by the Bangladeshi diplomats based in the UN,” the minister said.He came up with the remark while speaking at a seminar titled ‘Genocide on March 25 in 1971 and Our Thoughts’ at the National Press Club in the capital on Sunday.
Sampriti Bangladesh organised the seminar held with noted actor Pijush Bandyopadhyay in the chair. Nuzhat Chowdhury, daughter of martyred intellectual Dr Alim Chowdhury, presented the keynote paper.
“Our diplomats failed to properly present the March 25 genocide when the United Nations in 2015 decided to observe International Genocide Day on December 9,” he said.
Mozammel said although there is no specific incident of genocide on December 9 across the world, the United Nations fixed the day for observance of International Genocide Day.
“We had a huge opportunity in 2015, but our diplomats could not properly portray the March 25 genocide by Pakistan occupation forces before the UN,” he added.
He, however, said the government is working to obtain international recognition of March 25 as Genocide Day through the foreign ministry.The minister also warned that they will try those who want to create controversy over an established truth by raising question about the number of martyrs of War of Liberation.
About banning anti-liberation force Jamaat-e-Islami, the minister said, “Their (Jamaat) root is very deep as they had been in power for 30 years, but it will be easier for us if we can create global campaign on the issue.”
In September 2015, UN General Assembly announced December 9 as ‘International Day of Commemoration and Dignity of the Victims of the Crime of Genocide and of the Prevention of this Crime.’
Bangladesh has long been demanded international recognition of the March 25 genocide by the Pakistani occupation force.
Mozammel also hinted that a ‘truth commission’ will be constituted to inform people about the role of Khondaker Mustaque Ahmed and Ziaur Rahman in opposing Mujibnagar government in 1971.
Security and political analyst AKM Md Ali Shikder, Wakar Hasan Bir Protik, Provost of Jagannath Hall of Dhaka University Ashim Sarkar and former information and cultural secretary Nasir Uddin Ahmed also spoke at the seminar.