‘We Have Only One Enemy…’: Sheikh Hasina Says She Doesn’t Want to Put Nose in India-China Issue

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday called India a ‘trusted friend’ and said the ‘long standing’ water-sharing dispute between the two countries should be resolved to ease the problems faced by the citizens.

While addressing the question on China’s relationship with India and China, Hasina said Bangladesh’s foreign policy is “friendship to all, malice to none”.

The Bangladesh prime minister is scheduled to visit India between September 5 and 8, during which she will meet with President Droupadi Murmu and Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar and hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“We are downstream, water is coming from India. So, India should show more generosity. Both countries would be beneficiaries. Sometimes, our people suffer a lot because of this, especially the Teesta River. We found that PM (Modi) is very eager to solve this but the problem is in your country. We share only Ganges water but we have 54 other rivers. It’s a long-standing problem and should be resolved,” she said.

“Our foreign policy is very clear — friendship to all, malice to none. If there’s a problem, it’s between China and India. I don’t want to put my nose there,” she added.

Hasina said that leading countries should always address their differences and disputes through dialogue and added that she won’t interfere with India-China issues.

“And I always feel that yes, if there is any problem which is between China and India but I don’t want to put my nose to that. I want development of my country and because India is our next-door neighbour, we have very good relationship. We had many bilateral problems it’s true, but we solve many problems… you know that,” she said.

Reacting to Bangladesh’s relation with China, she said that her main goal is the country’s development.

“And my point is that we should focus on our people. How to give them a better life? How to improve their life? And I am always saying that we have only one enemy. That is poverty. So let us work together,” she added.

She also praised the relationship between the two countries since Bangladesh’s formation. “Even in 1975, when I lost all my family members, the then-Indian PM gave us shelter in India,” said Sheikh Hasina.

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