The Australia-Bangladesh two test Qantas series has been officially postponed amid security concerns in Bangladesh. The cricket tour was due to start on Oct. 9, next week, in Chittagong. While Bangladesh did name their squad for the tournament, Cricket Australia (CA) officials sent the Australian players back to their respective states.
BBC quoted CA as saying, “an independent security assessment found a risk of terrorism in Bangladesh targeting Australian nationals”.
The Espncricinfo reported that the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) was disappointed with Cricket Australia’s decision to stop the bilateral series. While BCB described their country as “one of the safest environments for holding international sporting events”, CA seemed committed to rescheduling the series. Earlier the CA officials were assessing a revised security plan for the series.
Following the murder of an Italian aid worker in Dhaka, security risks were highlighted in the official reports. The Islamic State Militant group had claimed the responsibility of the death.
The BCB had promised to give “VVIP” treatment to the Australian team, providing the same level of security as they offer to the visiting heads from other countries, noted BBC.
Failing to reach an agreement, CA had to officially call off their tour sighting concerns for their citizens in Bangladesh.
“We have worked tirelessly to find a way for the tour to proceed, but in the end it was simply not possible,” CA chief executive James Sutherland said.
“We had hoped that the security concerns would fade, but unfortunately the advice we have received from government, our own security experts and independent security advisors has clearly indicated that there are now high risks to our people should they make the trip.”
Earlier a report suggested that ISIS are not only attacking western foreigners but also citizens from Australia. The CA chief further said, “From an Australian perspective, the safety of our players and officials is our highest priority. We will work with the Bangladesh Cricket Board to reschedule the tour as soon as possible.”