4:32 pm - Friday September 23, 7983

BD-Myanmar FOC Sunday

The eighth round of secretary-level Foreign Office Consultation (FOC) between Bangladesh and Myanmar begins here on Sunday through which both sides will try to boost ‘trust’ and discuss all the pressing issues.

A seven-member delegation, led by Myanmar Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs U Thant Kyaw, is scheduled to arrive here on Thursday night on a four-day visit to attend the FOC, a senior official at the Foreign Ministry told UNB on Wednesday, UNB reports.

BD-MymForeign Secretary M Shahidul Haque and Thant Kyaw will lead Bangladesh and Myanmar sides respectively in the talks.

The Myanmar delegation will go to Sylhet on Friday and visit a number of places there before holding the FOC on Sunday, the official said adding that the Myanmar Deputy Foreign Minister will also meet Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali on Sunday afternoon.

The FOC is likely to focus on a number of issues, including Rohingyas, security, connectivity, boosting trust between the two countries, stronger border management, human trafficking, halting drug smuggling, especially Yaba pill, trade and investment; and introduction of coastal shipping between the two countries.

The meeting is also likely to discuss issues of holding security dialogues regularly, energy cooperation and promotion of tourism.

In May, tension escalated along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border following the firing of gunshots by Myanmar border guards that claimed the life of Nayek M Mizanur Rahman.

Bangladesh summoned Myanmar Ambassador to Bangladesh Myo Myint Than twice following the incidents. However, the situation was ‘handled well’ through discussions between the two sides.

The FOC was originally scheduled for June 18 but was postponed.