We are told that Rohingya crisis will be a major issue for discussion during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit to China next month. Earlier Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina accused Myanmar of being reluctant in taking back over a million Rohingya nationals and feared that some international aid agencies want to keep the crisis alive. The premier simultaneously feared that some international aid and voluntary agencies too were unwilling to resolve the crisis.
Bangladesh is hosting over 1.1 million forcefully displaced Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar district and most of them arrived there since August 25, 2017 after a military crackdown by Myanmar termed as “textbook example of ethnic cleansing” by the UN. One of the consequences of hosting such a large number of refugees in such a small area is the deep negative imprint on the local people as well as the environment.
We believe China can play
a more proactive role in
Rohingya repartition by exerting
its influence on Myanmar
The international community, which has failed so far to put adequate pressure on the military junta in Myanmar to take their citizens back, should realise the dangerous effect of prolonged internment in camps. Every day that passes increases the vulnerability of the refugees. Bangladesh expects a more vigorous role of the international community in the diplomatic front to make Myanmar take back the Rohingyas.
The military rulers in Myanmar have made every possible effort to thwart repatriation. Bangladesh has done the best it can in spite of its own multifarious constraints, and it is now for the international community to do everything to help a persecuted ethnic minority return to the country they belong to. It has long been clear that the only way to get proper action from Myanmar’s generals and their civilian enablers is to compel it, through prosecutions of the offenders by the International Criminal Court, through sanctions, travel bans or a freeze on assets.
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 without fear and as equal citizens in that country. In this regard, China can play a decisive role in Rohingya repartition by exerting its influence on Myanmar.