U.S., Bangladesh sign immunity pact

DHAKA Sept. 6. Bangladesh has signed an agreement with the United States under which no U.S. soldier or officer charged with criminal offences can be tried in Bangladesh or be extradited to the International Criminal Court for prosecution.

The agreement was signed in Washington last month by its ambassador, Syed Hassan Ahmed, and the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, Christina Rocca.

The Government made it public on Thursday, with the Foreign Secretary, Shamser Mobin Chowdhury, telling presspersons that there was nothing secretive about the pact.

The agreement stipulates that if any American soldier or officer is charged with criminal offence in Bangladesh, or is prosecuted in another country and takes shelter here, he cannot be handed over to the International Criminal Court but must be handed over to the U.S.

Mr. Chowdhury said that if, however, Bangladesh wanted to try U.S. military personnel, Dhaka would have to seek U.S. consent.

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