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Canadian High Commissioner in Dhaka Barbara Richardson has said Bangladesh stands at a crossroads and the choice of the road forward is certainly in the hands of politicians and most importantly in the hands of the people of this country.

“They are allies in one of the great ongoing struggles of the Bangladesh experience - the struggle for the soul of democracy, for a government that represents not itself, not the interest of the members of the government, but the interest of the people,” she said at a reception on Canada Day at the Canadian Embassy on Friday.

Reflecting on multiculturalism embedded in Canadian constitution, she said they have learned the lesson of accommodation and compromise.

“Not pursuit of personal interests, not pursuit of one province or one group or one political belief, but the interest of our great country and its future.”

Richardson, who is leaving Bangladesh completing her almost three-year tenure as the High Commissioner, said although Canada and Bangladesh are different in many respects, but “we are a people who share the same dreams for our children and our futures who share common values and who believe in the ability to build our countries to support these dreams and values.”

She said Canada is a country of immigrants and Canadians have built Canada on the “strength and determination of the cultures, beliefs and commitments.”

About Canada's stake in international developments, the High Commissioner said Canada contributes to build a better world and reach out to help those less fortunate. “We understand that this obligation is in our interest. A world that is peaceful where communities can trust and believe in their governments, a world that is prosperous in which democracy and respect for human rights flourishes.”

Chief Adviser's Special Assistant Prof Tamim was guest of honour at the ceremony attended, among others, by politicians, diplomats, editors and high civil and military officials.

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