Zahid F Sarder Saddi Responds to Letter by Six Congressmen to President Biden and New Bangladeshi Visa Restrictions
❝Bangladeshi Activist and Civil Society Leader Zahid F Sarder Saddi welcomes letter by Rep. Scott Perry and 5 other US Congressmen to President Biden on Bangladesh human rights as well as new visa policy issued by US State Department.❞
WASHINGTON, DC, June 06, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Zahid F Sarder Saddi, who is the Foreign Advisor to the Former Prime Minister of Bangladesh, the Hon’ Begum Khaleda Zia, has released a statement conveying his appreciation for an urgent letter to President Biden that was led by Congressman Scott Perry (PA-10) and also signed by Congressmen Bob Good (VA-05), Barry Moore (AL-02), Tim Burchett (TN-02), Warren Davidson (OH-08), and Keith Self (TX-03). In the letter, they requested that President Biden impose “stricter individual sanctions, banning Bangladesh law enforcement and military personnel from participating in UN peacekeeping missions.” Zahid F Sarder Saddi is also thanking Secretary of State Antony Blinken for implementing new visa restrictions on Bangladeshis who may undermine the country’s democratic process.
Photo: Six United States Congressmen seek ‘stricter sanctions’, ban on Bangladesh’s participation in UN Peacekeeping Force
The US government’s pressure on Bangladesh to respect the rights of its citizens increased in April 2023, when Secretary Blinken met in Washington DC with Bangladesh Foreign Minister A. K. Abdul Momen. In May 2023, Secretary Blinken sent an even clearer message, emphasizing that the world, including the United States, is looking to Bangladesh to set a strong example of free and fair elections for the region and beyond. Supportive statements were also issued by Counselor of the US Department of State Derek Chollet and US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland.
Photo: Bangladeshi Human Rights Activist and Bangladesh former Foreign Advisor Zahid F Sarder Saddi with United States Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken
Now US leadership appears to be further coalescing around the issue of democratic elections in Bangladesh. Influential US Congressman Scott Perry has also stepped forward and has been joined by Congressmen Bob Good, Barry Moore, Tim Burchett, Warren Davidson and Keith Self. In their joint letter to President Biden, they said that the government of Bangladesh “has increasingly repudiated democratic systems [and] perpetrated widespread abuse against its citizens.” The Congressional leaders requested urgent action to stop human rights abuses in the country, including by the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), “the major perpetrator of torture, disappearances, and extra judicial killings in Bangladesh.”
Photo: Letter sent to US President Biden by Congressmen Scott Perry (PA-10), Bob Good (VA-05), Barry Moore (AL-02), Tim Burchett (TN-02), Warren Davidson (OH-08), and Keith Self (TX-03)
Congressman Perry, a retired US Army Brigadier General, serves as Chairman for the Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management and is on the committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. He also serves on Oversight and Accountability, a subcommittee of the Foreign Affairs Committee, focusing on national security; peacekeeping, peace enforcement, and enforcement of United Nations or other international sanctions; USAID; Defense; promotion of democracy; embassy security; international broadcasting; and public diplomacy, including international communication and information policy. Additionally, Rep. Perry is the Chairman of the House Freedom Caucus.
Rep. Perry sees the Indo-Pacific region, and Bangladesh in particular, as crucial to human rights, security, and democratic governance on a global level. For the past decade, Zahid F Sarder Saddi has been meeting with Rep. Perry to collaborate on how to bring greater peace to the geopolitical space.
“I have enjoyed working with Rep. Perry, as he is one of the biggest supporters in the US House of human rights in Bangladesh,” says Zahid F Sarder Saddi. “He has shown himself to be a committed ally of the people of Bangladesh by exerting influence through the Congressional Committee of Foreign Affairs. He has expressed his desire to protect democracy through comprehensive legislation, human rights of Bangladeshi religious minorities, free and fair elections, and the preservation of the Bangladeshi community both in the United States and in Bangladesh.”
Photo: Human Rights Activist, Civil Society Leader and Bangladesh former Foreign Advisor Zahid F Sarder Saddi and renowned Human Rights Defender Barrister Abu Sayem with United States Congressman Scott Perry | US CONGRESS
Congressman Bob Good is a member of the House Freedom Caucus and serves on the Education and Labor Committee and the Budget Committee. Congressman Barry Moore is a member of the House Freedom Caucus and the House Judiciary Committee. Congressman Tim Burchett currently serves on the House Committees on Oversight and Accountability; Foreign Affairs; and Transportation and Infrastructure. Congressman Warren Davidson serves on the House Financial Services Committee, Subcommittee on House National Security, and International Development and Monetary Policy. Congressman Keith Self is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel and a Texas Judge who is on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.
“I appreciate their efforts to protect human rights and free elections in Bangladesh and thank all of them for their letter to President Biden,” Zahid F Sarder Saddi says. “I look forward to working with them and other US Senators and Representatives across the aisle in the months to come.”
Photo: High-ranking Bangladeshi delegate team headed by the former Minister of Bangladesh and Standing Committee Member of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury at United States Congress with Congressman Scott Perry | US CONGRESS
In news from the US State Department, Secretary Blinken has announced a new visa policy that will “restrict the issuance of visas for any Bangladeshi individual, believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining the democratic election process in Bangladesh. This includes current and former Bangladeshi officials, members of pro-government and opposition political parties, and members of law enforcement, the judiciary, and security services.”
“I am grateful that Secretary Blinken has implemented this new visa policy. Once again, the United States is proving itself to be a strong advocate of democratic elections in Bangladesh,” says Zahid F Sarder Saddi. “I am deeply thankful for the tireless efforts of both these US Congressmen and the US State Department to stop human rights violations in Bangladesh. With their support, all Bangladeshis will enjoy democratic norms and Take Back Bangladesh.”
About —Zahid F Sarder Saddi
Zahid F Sarder Saddi is a prominent Bangladeshi politician, humanitarian, and advocate for Bangladesh and its people. He served as a Foreign Advisor to the three-time Prime Minister of Bangladesh, the Hon’ Begum Khaleda Zia. He was also appointed as a Special Envoy to the Bangladesh Nationalist Party-BNP. Zahid F Sarder Saddi works with several organizations and holds a special passion for helping the Bangladeshi community in the United States and around the world. He has been involved in the Bangladeshi American Society for over 25 years and works to carry the voice of Bangladeshi Americans to lawmakers. Zahid F Sarder Saddi is also a Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of the Daily Bangla Times, a leading Bangladeshi English and Bangla language newspaper. Zahid F Sarder Saddi has received numerous accolades, including a humanitarian award for his work during the COVID-19 pandemic in helping to promote vaccine distribution to the Bangladeshi population.
To learn more about Zahid F Sarder Saddi, please visit www.ZahidFSarderSaddi.com or reach out to Zahid F Sarder Saddi at [email protected].
CONTACT: Zahid F Sarder Saddi, info at zahidfsardersaddi.com
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