Martin Chungong, Secretary General, Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) called on Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, Foreign Minister at his office at the National Parliament in Dhaka today.
During the call on Bangladesh Foreign Minister said “We have made it a foreign policy priority to facilitate the interaction of our Parliament Members with their counterparts from around the world”.
The Bangladesh Foreign Minister reiterated that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been leading from the front in Bangladesh’s sustained efforts towards women’s empowerment. He further underscored the need to addressing some of the key outstanding challenges concerning maternal malnutrition, child marriage, unskilled birth attendance and gender disparity in tertiary education through IPU’s meaningful cooperation.
The IPU Secretary General praised Bangladesh’s continued constructive engagement with IPU. Mentioning successful election of Saber Hossain Chowdhury, MP as the President of IPU Assembly, he said that it would help taking the relationship between Bangladesh and IPU to new heights.
The IPU Secretary General further briefed the Foreign Minister about some of the recent initiatives of IPU, including the Cooperation Agreement between UN, parliaments and IPU, to further promote and showcase Parliament’s role in addressing certain specific development challenges.
The Foreign Minister particularly appreciated IPU’s current focus on enhancing the Parliaments’ role in designing and implementing the post-2015 Development Agenda including SDGs.
The IPU Secretary General sought Bangladesh’s support on IPU’s initiative during the adoption of the post-2015 Development Agenda at the 70th UN General Assembly session in New York in September. In response, the Foreign Minister assured him to extend all possible support from Bangladesh in this regard.
Mr. Chungong is currently on his maiden visit to Bangladesh.