1176Published on March 23, 2021
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called on world leaders to emphasise sustainable development and warned the adaptation process will fail to provide lasting protection to the most vulnerable countries unless the current trend of climate change is stemmed.
The prime minister was addressing a programme commemorating the birth centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the golden jubilee of Bangladesh's independence at the National Parade Ground on Monday.
“The countries in our subcontinent are the most vulnerable to the impact of global warming and climate change. We have no role to play in climate change, yet we suffer the most. So we can temporarily protect ourselves through adaptation, but the adaptation process will fail to provide long-term protection unless the current trend of climate change is stopped.”
As the current president of the Climate Vulnerable Forum or CVF, Bangladesh has been urging world leaders to take swift action to tackle climate change, according to Hasina.
“The office of Global Climate Adaptation, Bangladesh was launched in Dhaka last year. The Dhaka office has already begun to find out what needs to be done to address the damage caused by climate change in South Asia and take appropriate action. ”
"On the auspicious occasions of the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the golden jubilee of independence, I call upon the world to ensure sustainable development."
Hasina also highlighted the plight of poverty-stricken people in South Asia as she urged regional leaders to utilise the natural resources that are available to redress the situation.
"There is no denying that a large number of people in South Asia still live below the poverty line. Many are deprived of even the basic necessities of life.”
It is possible to alleviate poverty in the region by making proper use of the natural resources available in South Asia, she added, while stressing the need to maintain friendly relations between neighbouring states.
The heads of state and governments of five neighbouring countries are attending the 10-day event marking the birth centenary of Bangabandhu and the golden jubilee of independence. Bidya Devi Bhandari, Nepal's first woman president, also spoke as the guest of honour on the sixth day of the event.
“The world at present is a 'global village.' You can't think of walking alone. We will think collectively. But South Asia is one of the world's most important regions. There are endless resources here. If we all move forward hand in hand with friendly relations, we will surely be able to liberate the people of the region from hunger and poverty and transform them into developed, prosperous people,” Hasina said.
"We live in a region where we have to deal with natural disasters all the time. Moreover, although we are not very responsible for climate change, we are not immune to this impact. We are constantly hit. So we think South Asia, which is considered a natural disaster-prone area, needs to be more careful. Countries in the foothills of the Himalayas are constantly being affected by natural disasters such as earthquakes, avalanches, landslides, eruptions or hurricanes. We have to deal with it.”