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US keeps pressure on Bangladesh over human rights abuses

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A top US envoy, State Department Counselor Derek Chollet, has affirmed that sanctions against the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), an elite Bangladesh police unit accused of extrajudicial killings, will not be lifted until the unit is reformed. Chollet’s visit to the South Asian country this week involved discussions with government representatives in Dhaka on security cooperation.

As one of the most senior US officials to travel to Bangladesh since the imposition of the sanctions, Chollet emphasized the importance of democracy, declaring, “If there’s an erosion in democracy anywhere, it starts to put a limiting factor on what we can do together.” His remarks underscore the US’s commitment to promoting democratic values and human rights in its partnerships worldwide.

Chollet further stated that the US remains dedicated to helping Bangladesh enhance its rule of law and security, but stressed that the sanctions against the RAB would continue until the unit has undergone necessary reforms. This announcement reflects the US’s unwavering position on human rights and its commitment to upholding ethical standards in its international relationships.

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