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PM asks armed forces to remain alert

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Staff Reporter
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday asked the armed forces to remain alert all the time for facing any situation, although Bangladesh always believes in peace.
“We want peace, but you have to remain alert all the time to face any situation and we have to enhance our capability to this end,” she said yesterday during a meeting with NDC Commandant, faculties, staff members and participants of NDC and War Course-2013 held at her office.
Hasina said that having strong armed forces in a country like Bangladesh does not mean that it will engage in war. “The armed forces will be used for maintaining peace not merely in the country, but also across the world.”
In this connection, she mentioned the Bangladesh armed forces role in the UN Peacekeeping missions across the globe.
The Prime Minister said that despite financial constraints, the government has increased the budgetary allocation for the modernization of the armed forces. “We increased the allocation so that our armed forces could compete with other armed forces of the world.”
She expressed the hope that the country’s armed forces will continue to maintain its high standard of efficiency and professionalism.
Hasina mentioned that the patriotic armed forces of Bangladesh, established in the battle field of liberation war, have always worked with integrity, commitment and diligence to help the people in times of natural calamities and other disasters.
They have implemented strategic infrastructure projects and worked generally with very high standard at both home and abroad, she said, adding that they have earned very good reputation internally as well as internationally.
Mentioning Bangladesh’s strategic geographic location as important in the global politics, the Prime Minister said Bangladesh is playing a major role in promoting regional integration.
Besides, she said, Bangladesh is also playing important role in establishing peace at domestic, regional and international level.
Hasina said Bangladesh’s domestic policies have proved to be effective in human development and economic empowerment of the people in general, while the foreign policy has worked to create a most favorable environment for national development.
She said the government has been trying hard to ensure these principles in the country’s politics, economy and governance braving various odds.
Describing various initiatives in strengthening the country’s armed forces, the PM said that her government has been working to establish professional and well-trained armed forces.
“Training is very important in the perspective of a globalize multi-polar world where technologies are continuously improving with increasing connections among the people.”
She mentioned that her government has ensured legitimate safeguards in light of national security concerns and also successfully encouraged effective use of technology.
The government has allocated increased money for the armed forces in the national budgets for the purpose, she said.
Hasina said she believed that with the just completed courses at the National Staff College, the participants from home and abroad will be better prepared to tackle the challenges they will be facing.
She hoped that the participants, with the knowledge they acquired in the year-long training and also with their commitment, will help ensure stability, development and empowerment of the people.
Mentioning the participation of members of the Armed Forces at the UN peacekeeping missions, the Prime Minister said they have brightened the image of the country in the international arena.
In this regard, she said her government has been working to further increase Bangladesh’s participation in the UN peacekeeping missions.
A total of 64 participants including 26 from China, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Malaysia and Tanzania are taking part in the NDC and War Course 2013.