Distinguished Professor Ali Riaz has been quoted in various international media on the U.S. sanctions on Bangladesh’s elite force Rapid Action Battalion. On December 10, the U.S. Treasury and the State Department imposed sanctions on the force and seven of its current and former officers. Riaz has been quoted in Aljazeera English, the Daily Star and Tamil Guardian on the causes of and implications of the sanctions.
In a report in the Daily Star Riaz said: “Three factors likely behind the U.S. actions are: the worsening human rights situation in Bangladesh; the Biden administration’s decision to fight authoritarianism and violation of human rights; and the U.S.’s increasing interests in the region due to growing geopolitical and geostrategic importance of the Asia-Pacific region, including Bangladesh.”
In the Aljazeera report Riaz said that recent U.S. moves are not markers of a complete shift of American policy toward Bangladesh but an indication that the “patience of the United States is wearing thin.”
“For a long time, Washington used to view Bangladesh through the Indian prism, but this (sanction) indicates it is decoupling Bangladesh from its India policy,” said Riaz in the Tamil Guardian.