By Binsal Abdulkader
ABU DHABI, 16th August, 2023 (WAM) -- An abducted Bangladeshi employee of the UN in Yemen was completely hopeless at one point, but the UAE's help brought him back to normal life, a top Bangladeshi diplomat told the Emirates News Agency (WAM).
"During his 18-month long ordeal, he was ill and needed medication, but it was difficult for him to get medical support. At one point of time, he had thought that he would not see his family again. So, it's a great relief that he was released and rejoined his family, thanks to the UAE's help," said Mohammed Abu Zafar, Ambassador of Bangladesh to the UAE.
In an interview with WAM at the Bangladeshi Embassy in Abu Dhabi, the envoy was talking about Akam Sofyol Anam, a staff member with the UN Department of Safety and Security in Aden, who was abducted in Yemen in February 2022, along with a few colleagues. They were released last week.
"The UAE played a crucial role to get him released. Our Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina expressed her appreciation to President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in a phone call on Monday," the ambassador said.
As WAM reported, Sheikh Hasina praised the UAE's unwavering efforts in enhancing global security, stability, and peace. His Highness Sheikh Mohamed affirmed the UAE's steadfast commitment to supporting the UN's initiatives and humanitarian efforts, and emphasised the UAE's deeply rooted humanitarian approach based on respect for human life, cooperation, and the promotion of stability and security.
The Bangladeshi envoy said the released Bangladeshi national is doing well after reaching home on 9th August. Anam has met Prime Minister Hasina along with his family members and he is in good spirits.
Quoting Anam's revelations of his horrific experience, the ambassador said it proved the seriousness of extremism and terrorism. "Anam revealed he was blindfolded and moved from one place to other. What kind of sufferings, mental agony and trauma he had gone through over the last 18 months!" Abu Zafar said.
He urged the world community to work together to ensure that such incidents are never repeated.
"The UAE is an important global player that helps establish peace in many parts of the world. Bangladesh always considers UAE as a great friend and brotherly country. We are grateful to the UAE's efforts to get him released. I am sure the UAE would continue to do such efforts for peace. That's the UAE's stated policy," the envoy emphasised.