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PM eyes three-dimensional Naval Force


CHITTAGONG, Dec 29 (UNB): Prime Minister Khaleda Zia said here Thursday that new-tech warships, helicopters and maritime patrol-aircraft would join the naval fleet to build a sophisticated and balanced three-dimensional Bangladesh Naval Force.
"Though Bangladesh is not very big in dimension, our maritime boundary is large. Due to geographical location and strategic reason, it is important to ensure that this boundary well-protected and to have all time vigilance in the sea," she told the President's Parade of Bangladesh Naval Force.
The winter parade was organised to mark the successful commissioning of the Midshipmen of Naval Academy's 2004 Alfa Batch.
Khaleda, who is in charge of the Defense Ministry, said despite resource constraints, her government continued efforts to establish a strong naval force through its modernisation and enhancement of its capability. Within this short time, five offshore vessels, two tugs and two-PPM boats already joined the Bangladesh Navy, she added.
"Our avowed target is to build a modern, efficient and balanced three- dimensional Navy that is in the process," she told the function at the parade ground of Bangladesh Naval Academy.
The Prime Minister said the immense responsibility and round-the-clock duty of the naval force "is not only necessary at wartime but also in the rough-wave-sea in normal time."
Khaleda termed Shaheed president Ziaur Rahman the architect of modern Bangladesh and of strong defense system and said that he had taken steps to make the naval force modern and strong through enhancing its overall capability.
As the PM reached the parade ground, Navy Chief Rear Admiral M Hassan Ali Khan, Commodore Commanding Chittagong Commander Bazlur Rahman and Commanding Officer of Bangladesh Naval Academy Capt M Nasir received her in a ceremonial motorcade of Bangladesh Navy.