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UN chief writes to Hasina, Khaleda

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has written letters to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia informing them that UN Assistant Secretary-General Oscar Fernandez- Taranco is acting on his behalf, an official of the Office of Spokesperson for the Secretary-General told The Independent in an email communication early Tuesday. “The Secretary-General recently sent letters to the two leaders, saying that Oscar Fernandez Taranco is acting on his behalf,” Lindsay Lynch of the Office of the Spokesperson said when asked if the UN chief had written to Hasina and Khaleda, urging them to sit for a dialogue to resolve the ongoing political stalemate in Bangladesh. According to sources concerned, the letters have already been delivered to the prime minister and the BNP chairperson.

In the letters, they said, the UN chief expressed his concern over the violence and called upon both the leaders to engage in talks to resolve their political differences.

Meanwhile, at a daily briefing at the UN headquarters in New York, Deputy Spokesperson for the Secretary-General Farhan Haq said Ban Ki-moon is concerned at the loss of life and property in Bangladesh.

Asked about some media reports that government is not allowing a visit to Bangladesh by Taranco, he said that there are no current plans for him to travel back to Dhaka.  “Taranco has been tasked by the Secretary-General to be in contact with the government and the opposition, and he will continue with those efforts,” he added.

When contacted, Bangladesh’s Permanent Representative to UN in New York Dr AK Momen told The Independent over phone that Taranco communicated with him to inform about his new assignment.