CLS & EPLS

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised a lecture in its Eminent Persons Lecture Series (EPLS) titled “Commemorating the Silver Jubilee of Diplomatic Relations between South Africa and Bangladesh”, on 04 September 2019. His Excellency Ambassador Dr. Anil Sooklal, Deputy Director General, Asia and Middle East, Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), South Africa, graced the occasion as the guest speaker. Major General AKM Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS commenced the session with his address of welcome. Mr. Md. Shahidul Haque, Foreign Secretary, Government of Bangladesh, chaired and concluded the session.

General Rahman began with speaking about the silver jubilee celebration of Bangladesh-South Africa diplomatic ties. The countries are deeply appreciative of each other’s ideals of freedom struggle and hold sincere respect for their two greatest leaders: Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Nelson Mandela. He gratefully referred to President Mandela’s visit to Bangladesh in March, 1997. The focal points in Bangladesh-South Africa bilateral relations are to enhance these bonds through solidarity, friendship, and promote south-south cooperation for implementing the 2030 Agenda. Both countries are members of some common organizations, e.g., Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), the Commonwealth, Non-aligned Movement (NAM) etc. South Africa is a member of the BRICS group. Bangladesh has huge investment opportunities in diverse sectors including readymade garments, pharmaceuticals, fisheries, leather products, tourism etc, as it is moving fast towards becoming a developed country by 2041. Here, General Rahman emphasized on working more closely together in identified priority areas that will benefit both countries, especially in changing global and regional dynamics. He concluded by stressing greater cooperation in cricket as Bangladesh’s cricket coaches were mostly South African.

Ambassador Dr. Anil Sooklal, conveyed South Africa’s gratitude to Bangladesh and the Bangladeshi people for contributing to South Africa’s fight for freedom, liberation and democracy. He recalled President Mandela’s visit to Bangladesh with pride, paid homage to the dynamic and visionary leadership of Mandela and Bangabandhu. Bangladesh and South Africa have remarkable prospects given the close relation they enjoy and cooperation they have in different sectors, e.g., trade and investment, sports, wildlife management etc. On racial tensions in his own country, he said the legacy of apartheid would need more time to go away. He recognized Bangladesh’s contribution as one of the largest troop and police contributors to United Nations peacekeeping operations, and the current participation in six missions in Africa. He placed focus on the Indo-Pacific region for bolstering cooperation among members amid the changing global economic, security and geopolitical scenarios.

Dr. Sooklal also spoke on the worldwide economic slump and ensuing problems, rise and spread of racial supremacist/ jingoistic movements in several countries, trade protectionism, withdrawal by the US from many international fora and trade war with China and its impacts, which were gravely endangering the present-day multilateralism-based global structure. He concluded the speech by re-emphasizing his country’s commitment to further deepening the bonds of friendship that exist with Bangladesh.

Mr. Md. Shahidul Haque, Foreign Secretary, Bangladesh, in his closing remarks, thanked the ambassador for mentioning South Africa as a source of inspiration during Bangladesh’s freedom struggle in 1971. He also talked about the visit of President Mandela to Bangladesh and his own involvement during that event. Bangladesh and South Africa are working closely in various organizations, but Bangladesh’s links with Africa are rather very lean; when this was realized some years ago, Bangladesh initiated to increase its presence in Africa. The goal was not only to raise diplomatic or business visits but also connecting people and setting up mission there. Consequently, two missions were set up this year. He further said that in the past, a major war was followed by restructuring of the global order but at present, economic and geopolitical changes were occurring even in the absence of any major war, putting multilateralism at stake from diverse perspectives. Thus, developing countries like Bangladesh and South Africa must keep up their efforts for a fair and justice based society where people could get their equitable share of wealth. On redistribution of wealth, he said Bangladesh attained impressive economic growth in last 10 years but that also brought social inequalities. Distribution of wealth in an economy has always been a debated issue and could not easily be resolved. But the question was how far it could be brought to a certain level where people would not be hurt. He said Bangladesh is deepening and widening its relations with not only South Africa but the whole African continent also. As some of Bangladesh’s traditional partners are slowing down in terms of their economic and political activities, there would be a need to be together for creating a better world for countries in these two regions. He concluded by thanking H.E. Sotyu for her courage for coming out and saying things that had to be said.     

 

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised a public lecture on Bangladesh and United Kingdom Relations in the context of UK’s exit from the European Union” on 24 April 2019 at BIISS auditorium. H E Sir Simon McDonald, Parmanent Under Secretary of British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) was present as the Guest Speaker. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS, delivered the Welcome Address. 

In his address, Major General A K M Abdur Rahman highlighted on the long standing relationship between Bangladesh and United Kingdom. He mentioned that the UK, for long, has been one of the largest development partners of Bangladesh and It also remains the country’s largest foreign investor. In his speech, H E Sir Simon McDonald mentioned that the United Kingdom is looking for strengthened relations with the Commonwealth countries and for sharing opportunities with Bangladesh. He added that the UK is investing in different sectors of Bangladesh including retail, banking, energy, infrastructure, consultancy and education.

The programme included a lively open discussion where Senior officials from different ministries of Bangladesh, representatives from different foreign missions, business personalities, media, academia, researchers, teachers from various universities participated and expressed their valuable opinions and observations on the subject. They expected a strongly bonded relationship between Bangladesh and UK in the field of development and mutual cooperation.

 

 

 

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) and Embassy of Japan in Bangladesh jointly organised a lecture on “Bangladesh-Japan Development Cooperation for Enhanced Connectivity” on 21 March 2019 at BIISS auditorium. Professor Naohiro Kitano, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University & Visiting Fellow, JICA Research Institute was present as the Guest Speaker. Mr. Takeshi Ito, Minister, Embassy of Japan was also present in the programme. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS, delivered the Welcome Address.

 In his speech, Major General A K M Abdur Rahman highlighted on the long standing relationship between Bangladesh and Japan which is based on shared values of peace and prosperity. In his speech, Professor Naohiro Kitano mentioned that Bangladesh’s economic and social development has been remarkable. He focused on different  aspects of mutual cooperation between Bangladesh and Japan for deepening the relationship more. He highlighted on Japan’s various Connectivity Initiative, especially the Bay of Bengal Industrial Growth Belt (BIG-B) and Transport Network Development for Regional Connectivity. He also focused on cooperation with Bangladesh in energy sector development, urban transport network development, waste management, establishing economic zone and academic exchange. Mr. Takeshi Ito, Minister, Embassy of Japan also gave his valuable remarks.

The programme included a lively open discussion where Senior officials from different ministries of Bangladesh, representatives from different concered organisations, business personalities, media, academia, researchers, teachers from various universities participated and expressed their valuable opinions and observations on the subject. They expected a strongly bonded relationship between Bangladesh and Japan specially in the field of peace, development and mutual cooperation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised a Lectureon “Importance of the CTBT in Constraining the Development of Nuclear Weapons, and the Civil and Scientific Applications” on 04 October 2018 at BIISS auditorium. H. E. Dr. Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary, the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), delivered the Lecture. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS, delivered the Welcome Address. Ambassador Munshi Faiz Ahmad, Chairman, Board of Governors, BIISS, Chaired and summed up the Session.

 In his Lecture, H. E. Dr. Lassina Zerbo noted that the CTBT bans any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion anywhere in the world. A legally binding in force CTBT is the only way to solidify the moratorium on nuclear testing and an essential step towards the ultimate goal: a world free from nuclear weapons. The organisation is ready to assist countries in whatever way it can. The CTBTO stands ready to contribute to the process of verifiable denuclearisation if called upon by its member states. He praised the role of Bangladesh and noted that as a strong protagonist of general and complete disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation, Bangladesh is one of the first-group of signatories to CTBT and is the 54th country to ratify the Treaty on 8 March 2000. He also noted that the country is respectful to the norms and conditions of CTBT which can be an example for other countries.

Representatives from different organisations, former ambassadors, diplomats of different countries, officials from different ministries of Bangladesh, media, members of academia, researchers and teachers from various universities participated in the open discussion and expressed their valuable opinions, observations and queries on the topic.

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised a Seminar on "Commonwealth Advantage: Progress and Potential" on 08 August 2018 at BIISS auditorium in Dhaka. H. E. Mr Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, MP, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh was present in the seminar as the Chief Guest. H. E. Mr Shahriar Alam, MP, State Minister, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh was present in the seminar as the Special Guest H. E. Rt Hon Patricia Scotland, the Commonwealth Secretary General was present as the Guest of Honour. Ambassador Munshi Faiz Ahmad, Chairman, Board of Governors, BLISS, chaired the session. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS delivered the address of welcome.

In the welcome address, Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS noted that Commonwealth organisations are involved in diverse activities. from helping countries with trade negotiations to encouraging women's leadership, building the small business sector and supporting youth participation at all levels of society. The focus of Commonwealth includes but not limited to boosting trade, strengthening governance, rege

Prominent academicians

 

 

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised a Lecture on The United States and the Indo-Pacific Region on 30 January 2018 at BIISS auditorium. H. E. Mr. Daniel N. Rosenblum, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of South and Central Asia, the US Department of State, delivered a Lecture on “The United States and the Indo-Pacific Region”. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS, delivered the address of welcome. Ambassador Munshi Faiz Ahmad, Chairman, Board of Governors, BIISS, chaired thesession and delivered the concluding remarks. H. E. Marcia Stephens Bloom Bernicat, the US Ambassador to Bangladesh, was also present during the lecture.

 In his Lecture, H. E. Mr. Daniel N. Rosenblum affirmed the United States’ commitment to promote trade, transformative infrastructure, connectivity, and stability inthe Indo-Pacific region. He said that the region carries spceical significance to the US as the country shares its longest maritime border and has several long-standing treaty allies in the region. Being an Indo-Pacific country, the US has a major stake in the success of the region. Rapid economic growth in this region during the last few decades has lifted millions out of poverty and allowed for the development of a thriving middle class. He further added that Bangladesh is a remarkable success story in this regard, reaching lower middle-income status after consistently achieving more than 6 per cent for the past 10 years. The US greatly appreciates its security partnership with Bangladesh and highly value its role in maintaining international peace and security as one of the world’s largest contributors of international peacekeeping forces. He identified the key priorities of the United States in the Indo-Pacific reagion, that include reinforcing freedom of the seas and peaceful resolution of territorial and maritime disputes, strengthening military relationship and developing strong defense network with its allies, and expanding economic connectivity, and so on.  

Representatives from different organisations, former ambassadors, diplomats of different countries, officials from different ministries of Bangladesh, media, members of academia, researchers, teachers and students fromvarious universities participated in the open discussion and expressed their valuable opinions, observations and questions on the topic.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised a lecture titled “Reconciling Divided Societies, Building Democracy and Good Governance: Lessons from Sri Lanka” at its auditorium in Dhaka on Tuesday, 23 May 2017, where H. E. Mrs. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, Former President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka was the Guest Speaker. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS delivered the address of welcome while Ambassador Munshi Faiz Ahmad, Chairman, Board of Governors, BIISS, chaired the session and delivered the closing remarks.

Mrs. Kumaratunga highlighted different aspects of the Sri Lanka’s post civil war reconciliation and peacebuilding process. She also discussed her country’s present state of democracy as well as good governance. Mrs. Kumaratunga emphasised on pluralistic, multicultural and diversified society in South Asia. In her lecture, she identified terrorism as one of the main challenges in South Asia.                                                                                                 

Officials from different ministries of Bangladesh government, representatives of different embassies, representatives of different international and national organisations, former ambassadors, researchers of different institutes, high officials of different civil and military institutions, media and specialised academia participated in the open discussion and raised their valuable opinions, observations and questions to the seminar

 

 

 

 

Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) organised the Country Lecture on “France: Its challenges and Foreign Policy” on 13 April, 2017 at BIISS auditorium. The lecture was delivered by H. E. Mrs. Sophie Aubert, Ambassador of France to Bangladesh. She spoke about the various challenges France is facing both in domestic and foreign field. She also spoke about France’s foreign policy in the contemporary world.

The lecture was inaugurated and chaired by Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS. High-level military officials, scholars, academia, officials from law enforcement agencies, policy makers, current government officials, members of diplomatic corps, representatives from development partner organisations and media were present and participated in the open discussion session. They highlighted on issues related to the lecture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a part of BIISS Country Lecture Series (CLS), BIISS organised its 14th Lecture on “Bangladesh-EU Relations: A Multifaceted Partnership” at BIISS Auditorium on 06 October 2016. H.E. Ambassador Pierre Mayaudon, Head of the Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Bangladesh was the Guest Speaker on the event. Major General A K M Abdur Rahman, ndc, psc, Director General, BIISS delivered the address of welcome while Ambassador Munshi Faiz Ahmad, Chairman, Board of Governors, BIISS wrapped up the session. Officials from different ministries of Bangladesh government, representatives from different international organisations, members of diplomatic corps, academicians, journalists from print and electronic media participated in the open discussion and gave their valuable opinions, observations, questions and suggestions on how Bangladesh and EU can consolidate their existing ties of friendship and cooperation in the coming years.