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International relations

Bangladesh human rights controversy sparks U.S.-Russia spat

Moscow trumpets noninterference; Washington asks, 'Does that apply to Ukraine?'

The U.S. and Russia have been locked in a war of words over diplomatic approaches in Bangladesh. (Photo by Yuki Kohara) 

DHAKA -- Bangladesh has become an unlikely focal point in the war of words between the U.S. and Russia as the two sides spar over foreign missions' role in Dhaka's domestic issues.

The debate kicked off after the U.S. ambassador on Dec. 14 visited the home of a missing leader from the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party, allegedly the victim of a forced disappearance in 2013. He cut the visit short after his security detail felt threatened by activists for the Awami League, which has ruled the country under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina since 2009. They apparently wanted the U.S. to also investigate alleged disappearances and killings under a BNP regime decades ago.

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