Dhaka: Bangladesh on Thursday summoned Pakistan's acting high commissioner and strongly protested the remarks made by the country's Interior Minister over the death sentence given to the Jamaat-e-Islami chief, saying the comments amounted to interference in its internal affairs.
"This afternoon, the Acting High Commissioner of Pakistan in Dhaka Mr Ahmad Hussain Dayo was called...And conveyed the disappointment of the Government of Bangladesh at the comments made by a senior and important Cabinet member of the Government of Pakistan," a Foreign Ministry statement said.
Additional Foreign Secretary Mizanur Rahman told the envoy that Pakistan's Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar's comments "amounted to directly interfering with the internal affairs of Bangladesh."
Rahman also handed over an Aide Memoire to the Acting High Commissioner and "the Government of Pakistan was requested to take serious note of all these issues."
The envoy was summoned after Khan expressed concern over the death sentence handed down by a special tribunal to fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami chief Matiur Rahman Nizami on October 29 for committing crimes against humanity during the country's 1971 Liberation War against Pakistan.
Khan, in a statement, had said that though the trial was an internal matter of Bangladesh, "Pakistan cannot remain divorced from references to 1971 and its aftermath" and it was "highly unfortunate that almost 45 years after that tragic chain of events, the Bangladeshi government still seemed to be living in the past."
The Foreign Office statement said, "In addition, vested quarters in Pakistan were advised to mind their own business and set their house in order rather than try to interfere with the matters which fell within Bangladesh's domestic jurisdiction."
It said the trials of crimes against humanity "enjoyed support of the mass people in Bangladesh and the wider international community to break the culture of impunity for the crimes against humanity and genocide in 1971."
"It was only through ensuring justice that the wounds and trauma inflicted by those crimes in our national psyche can be healed and put behind," the statement said.
Pakistan's Jamaat-e-Islami party leaders also staged protests and issued statements condemning the trials of their old comrades in Bangladesh.
Dhaka also found the Pakistani Jamaat's remarks "provocative" and expected "as a friendly neighbour, Pakistan would refrain from such activities as it may hurt the sentiments of the people of Bangladesh and suggest misplaced sympathies for otherwise undeserving entities," it said.