Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will go Bhutan on a three day visit from 19 to 21 April to attend an international conference on autism. She will also hold bilateral meetings with the country’s top leadership on the sidelines.
PM Hasina will inaugurate the three-day International Conference on Autism and Neuro Developmental Disorders on April 19 in Thimphu, the Bhutanese capital. Beside this, she will hold meetings with Bhutan’s King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay and discuss bilateral and regional issues.
Saima Wazed Hossain Putul, Bangladesh PM’s daughter and member of WHO’s expert advisory panel on mental health and chairperson of the National Advisory Committee on Autism, has taken initiatives to hold the conference in Thimphu at WHO’s request.
Hasina’s visit will have a focus on cooperation in transit, transhipment and hydro-power, said the Dhaka Tribune quoting diplomatic sources.
According to the Bhutanese online news outlet Kuensel, while in the country, Hasina will sign several Memoranda of Understanding and also attend the ground-breaking ceremony of the Bangladesh embassy in Hejo, Thimphu.
During a press-meet on 14 April, Bhutanese PM Lyonchoen Tshering Tobgay said that PM Hasina visiting Bhutan indicates the importance of the close relations between the countries.
Bhutan and Bangladesh cooperate in areas such as agriculture, human resource development, cultural exchanges, and also air services besides the annual consultation meetings at the foreign secretary level.
Bhutanese FM Damcho Dorji said that Bhutan and Bangladesh traditionally have enjoyed close and friendly relations that started since 1971, when the latter won the liberation war and declared independence.
Even at the regional level, we have talks about water resources management and recently trilateral cooperation in hydropower, he pointed out.
At the multilateral forum, the two countries have been supporting each other at every opportunity and Bhutan has been giving favourable consideration or support to Bangladesh at every election to many international organisations, the foreign minister said.
Bangladesh established diplomatic relations with Bhutan in 1973 and established its resident embassy in the country. Former King Jigme Singye Wangchuck visited Bangladesh in 1974, and since then the leaders from both the two countries have visited each other numerous times.
The President of Bangladesh visited the country last year.
PM Sheikh Hasina visited Bhutan in 2009, 2010, and then in 2015 on a private visit.