The very birth of Bangladesh was aimed at establishing peace, progress, liberty, democracy and human rights. Achievement of these cardinal principles was no easy task. But Bangladesh attained these main goals through great struggles and hurdles.
To the big surprise of the world, Bangladesh has accomplished these principles and today it has become a role model of peace, progress and liberty.
Bangladesh firmly believes in the principle of peaceful coexistence of all nations and it continues to work for it relentlessly.
And the efforts of Bangladesh have been appreciated all over the world.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Saturday said that Bangladesh is a “brand-name” in the UN peacekeeping due to the policies of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Referring to the Bangabandhu’s inaugural speech at the UN General Assembly in 1974 when he said ‘peace is imperative for survival of mankind’, the foreign minister said following his path, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina “resolved most of our critical issues with its neighbors, for example, land boundary demarcation, maritime boundary or water sharing through peaceful means, and without a single bullet ever been fired.”
She allowed nearly 176,000 of its men and women to work as UN Peacekeepers in many Missions abroad, making the country a ‘brand-name’ in UN peacekeeping.
“Peace is an innate aspiration of every human being,” he said, while speaking at the World Peace Conference, organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs under the patronage of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as part of the twin celebrations of the birth centenary of Bangabandhu and the Golden Jubilee of Bangladesh’s Independence.
He paid his deepest homage to the memory of the Bangabandhu, whose “unprecedented charismatic leadership and long struggle helped us achieve our long-cherished independence”.
“Since his early childhood, Bangabandhu was a benevolent social activist. The principal objective of his life was to ensure the wellbeing of people. His lifelong struggle was for establishing people's rights in a peaceful manner. His active participation in all the democratic movements for his motherland from 1948 to 1971 had transformed him into the most charismatic and undisputed leader of the Bangalee nation. He was fondly given the title of ‘Bangabandhu’ by his people which means friend of Bengal.”
Defining Peace, the Father of the nation stated in 1974 at the UN General Assembly that, “Our total commitment to peace is born of the realization that only an environment of peace would enable us to mobilize and concentrate all our energies and resources in combating the scourges of poverty, hunger, diseases, illiteracy and unemployment”.
He further said: “Peace is imperative for the survival of mankind. It represents the deepest aspirations of men and women throughout the world. Peace to endure must, however, be based on justice”.
The foreign minister said the Bangabandhu desired that Bangladesh would be a land of peace that would emit the practices of peace across nations. No wonder he designed our foreign policy, the cardinal principle of which is “Friendship to all, malice towards none”.
In order to achieve sustainable peace across nations, the foreign minister said, the prime minister proposed a resolution at the UN known as “Culture of Peace” that proposes to create a mindset of tolerance, a mindset of respect towards others irrespective of color, ethnicity, background, race or religion.
“If we can create such a mindset sustainable peace across nations is likely to achieve.”
“Unfortunately, people in many parts of the world are undergoing atrocities, persecution, venom of hatred and deprivation, violence and wars. If we follow the Bangabandhu’s Principle and practices, for example, in order to have peace in South-Asia, he even made friendship with Pakistan, the occupying soldiers of which killed 3 million Bangladeshis and dishonoured more than 200,000 of our women and girls.
“We need courageous leaders like the Bangabandhu to end violence and achieve peace. No wonder he was awarded the Julio Curio Peace Prize in 1974. We cannot end violence and atrocities alone, we have to rise to the occasion and walk together in partnership and collaboration to end the venom of hatred, ignorance and violence across nations. Let us dream and dream for a better world for all,” he said.