PM agrees on Modi’s proposal to fight coronavirus together: Momen


DHAKA, March 13, 2020 (BSS) – Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today agreed with a proposal of her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi for adopting a strong strategy by SAARC nations to fight the lethal coronavirus.

“Our honourable Prime Minister termed the proposal of Indian Premier Narendra Modi as a good one and gave her consent to join a videoconference with other heads of SAARC countries to chalk out a strong strategy to combat the COVIT-19,” Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen told BSS this evening.

In a tweet, Modi today proposed that the leadership of SAARC nations chalk out a strong strategy to fight coronavirus.

“We could discuss, via videoconference, ways to keep our citizens healthy,” he tweeted.

Hours after the tweet, Indian High Commissioner in Dhaka Riva Ganguly Das went to the Bangladesh foreign minister’s residence to hand over the formal proposal of the Indian premier about the videoconference.

“I conveyed the message to honourable prime minister and she told me that if all the South Asian countries’ leaders participate, she is willing to join the videoconference,” Momen said.

The foreign minister continued: “When the Indian High Commission here confirmed that all SAARC member states, including Afghanistan and Pakistan, gave their positive notes about the videoconference, our prime minister gave her consent to join it.”

Momen said actually it will be the show of political solidarity to handle the coronavirus and protect the people of South Asia.

While asking when the videoconference will take place, the foreign minister said the date and time are yet to be finalised but it will be held soon.

Momen said the foreign ministry has already started work on preparing the talking points for Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for the videoconference.

In his tweet Modi said, “Together, we can set an example to the world, and contribute to a healthier planet as our planet is battling the COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus”.

In reply to Modi’s tweet, leaders of four South Asian nations –Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and the Maldives — gave reply supporting the Indian premier’s proposal towards collective efforts against the coronavirus outbreak that had spread over 121 countries and territories killing 5,120 people and infecting 139,637 others.

In a tweet, Bangladesh State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam also said that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina welcomed the proposal of the Indian premier and looks forward to a constructive dialogue with South Asian leaders at this testing time for the region and the world.