India analyst Ashok Swain has alleged in his tweet on Monday that Bangladesh has dropped the condition of ‘except Israel’ from its passport. He urged other countries should also do the same.
“Bangladesh drops ‘Except Israel’ from its Passports. All others should do,” said Ashok Swain in his tweet. His tweet had confused people as dropping the condition is assumed synonymous with accepting Israel.
However, the mayhem caused the Foreign Ministry of Bangladesh to address the concerns of people. Since the purported acceptance of Israel by Bangladesh at this time would have triggered a massive reaction from disgruntled Muslim communities.
The confusion stemmed from the new e-passport booklets that read “This passport is valid for all countries of the world.” The images of the new passport circulated on social media gave the perception that Bangladesh has accepted Israel. The news was even shared by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel that prompted the Foreign Ministry of Bangladesh to release clarification.
“The attention of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dhaka has recently been drawn to a Twitter post issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel welcoming removal of the ban on travel to Israel on E-passports being issued by Bangladesh. The confusion appears to have emanated from the new booklets of E-passports which does not contain the observation “all countries except Israel,” said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh.
Great news! #Bangladesh has removed travel ban to Israel. This is a welcome step & I call on the Bangladeshi government to move forward and establish diplomatic ties with #Israel so both our peoples could benefit & prosper.@IsraelMFA #IsraelLooksEast https://t.co/LbOLbm9dfG
— Gilad Cohen 🇮🇱 (@GiladCohen_) May 22, 2021
The ministry categorically denied any change in its policy regarding Israel. They denied accepting Israel or any changes in the travel ban on citizens.
“The removal of the observation has been done to maintain international standard of Bangladeshi e-passports and does not imply any change of Bangladesh’s foreign policy towards the Middle East. The ban on travel of Bangladeshi passport holders to Israel remains unchanged. The Government of Bangladesh has not deviated from its position on Israel and Bangladesh remains firm on its long-standing position in this regard,” it added further.
“The Government of Bangladesh has condemned the recent atrocities inflicted upon the civilians by the occupation forces of Israel at al-Aqsa mosque compound and in Gaza.
Bangladesh reiterates its principled position concerning the two-State Solution of the Palestine-Israel conflict in light of the UN resolutions recognizing pre-1967 borders and East Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Palestine,” said the foreign ministry in conclusion.