While visiting US Deputy Secretary of State Stephen E Beigun paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her official residence Ganabhaban, the Prime Minister reiterated her call to the international community, including the United States, to help Bangladesh for return of Rohingyas to Myanmar, their homeland.
Bangladesh now hosts over 1.2 million forcefully displaced Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar district and most of them arrived there since August 25, 2017 after a military crackdown which has been termed a ‘text book example of ethnic cleansing’. But over the last three years, displaced Rohingyas have appeared as a serious burden on the economy and environment of Bangladesh.
Bangladesh has always been serious about a safe repatriation of the Rohingya refugees. The government launched its diplomatic efforts to send them back and signed deals with Myanmar in 2018. But even a single Rohingya has not returned to their motherland for fear of being persecuted upon their return. To ensure
International community should take
necessary steps to help Rohingyas
return to the country they belong to
voluntary repatriation happen, full assurance is required that they will not be persecuted upon their return.
Bangladesh wants to resolve the Rohingya issue through peaceful negotiations, and the country expects similar reciprocity from Myanmar. But instead of taking back Rohingyas, Myanmar has long been trying to misguide the international community to avoid its obligations for the repatriation of the forcibly displaced Rohingyas. It seems we are paying the price for showing empathy to a persecuted minority population of a neighbouring country.
The military rulers in Myanmar have made every possible effort to foil the repatriation of Rohingyas. Bangladesh has done its best it can in spite of its own multifarious constraints, and now it is time for the international community to do the needful to help the Rohingyas return to the country they belong to. It is crucial that the international community continues to maintain pressure on Myanmar to create a conducive environment so that the Rohingya refugees can return to their homeland with safety, security and dignity.
The international community should realise the dangerous effect of prolonged stay in the camps. Bangladesh expects a more vigorous role of the international community on the diplomatic front to force Myanmar into taking back the Rohingyas.