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It’s US that trained RAB: FM Momen

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen has said that it is the United States and the United Kingdom which trained RAB on their rules of engagement how to behave with people and how to interrogate.

“They (RAB) have been trained by the USA and the UK. The US has taught them the rules of engagement, how to behave with people and how to interrogate,” he told reporters during his visits to Choyhara Islamia Arabia Madrasa, Syed Monohar Ali Astagram College, and Shirilob Chowdhury Child Kindergarten at Dirai upazila in Sunamganj district on Friday.

Dr Momen said RAB is very efficient in its work and they are very effective. “They’re very efficient and they’re not corrupt. That’s why they’ve been able to gain the trust of people.”

The Foreign Minister said the government will definitely encourage RAB to go and take training afresh if they (RAB) have any weaknesses in the rules of engagement and if there are any human rights violations in these rules of engagement.

But the sections that have been imposed on individuals suddenly are not very justified, said the Foreign Minister, adding that the US got one-sided information.

The government remains open to sharing experience, revisiting some aspects of the US and UK trained RAB’s rules of engagement and their training on human rights in handling the crimes.

Dr Momen said terrorist activities in the country have decreased because of RAB and in the last few years, there has been no more terrorist activity in the country after the Holey Artisan incident.

“This has been possible because of RAB. The US Department of State itself has acknowledged it. There’re some people who don’t like the law and order in the country. Those who like terrorism or drugs don’t like RAB because RAB  also acts against them. It’s very sad,” he added.

Earlier, the Foreign Minister wrote to his US counterpart Antony J. Blinken on a number of issues, including a call to “waive sanctions” on RAB  and its current and former senior officials.

Bangladesh had already updated Secretary Blinken sharing Bangladesh’s position on democracy, freedom of speech and human rights, minority and labour rights issues in his letter apart from touching upon sanctions issue broadly.

Bangladesh believes that the continuation of “sincere and candid” dialogues between the two friendly countries would help advance the bilateral relations on the basis of mutual respect and benefits.

Over the years, Dr Momen said, RAB has emerged as the most efficient law enforcement agency of the government that has been at the forefront of combating terrorism, drug trafficking, human trafficking and other transnational crimes.

“RAB’s crucial role in dealing with crimes has generated much confidence among citizens,” he said.

RAB has achieved public confidence as it delivers and is not corrupt, and at the same time, as excesses of abuse have dramatically reduced over the last decade, says the government.