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Repatriation only solution to Rohingya crisis

Foreign minister tells British delegation

Published : 27 Jan 2024 10:23 PM | Updated : 28 Jan 2024 02:11 PM

Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud on Saturday reiterated that Dhaka will continue to hammer the international community to mount pressure on Myanmar to take back their displaced people from Bangladesh as repatriation is the only durable solution of Rohingya crisis. 

"We always seek the international community's cooperation. International community is beside us. We believe, if the international community mounts pressure on Myanmar, they will be forced to take back them (Rohingyas)," he said. 

Hasan made the remarks while briefing the journalists after holding a meeting with the visiting British cross-party parliamentary delegation at the state guest house Padma in the capital. 

During the meeting, the foreign minister discussed the Rohingya repatriation issue with the British lawmakers along with other bilateral matters. 

On Tuesday, the British delegation will be visiting the Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar in reaffirmation of their support to Bangladesh's generous hosting of the persecuted Rohingyas from Myanmar and resolution of the protracted Rohingya crisis. 

"Repatriation of the Rohingya people to Myanmar is the only solution. That is the durable and permanent solution. That is what I told them (British delegation) and they agreed with me," said the foreign minister.

Replying to a question on escalating ethnic conflict inside Rakhine state of Mayamar, he said Bangladesh's security forces along the Myanmar border remain alert amid growing tensions on the other side of the frontier. 

"We are (already) overburdened. We had provided them shelter on humanitarian grounds," he said. 

The foreign minister said that the ongoing conflict inside Rakhine would certainly have a negative impact on the efforts to repatriate Rohingyas to Myanmar. 

Mahmud said there are multiple issues concerning security and environment, and the Rohingya camps might become a breeding ground for militancy. 

Regarding his meeting with the British delegation, he said it was a courtesy meeting and they came to deepen and improve relations with Bangladesh and its parliament.

The British lawmakers highly appreciated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's development efforts that changed the country over the last 10 years.

The foreign minister said he requested the delegation members for enhanced private investment in Bangladesh, especially from the Bangladeshi diaspora.

He said expatriate Bangladeshis have the capacity to invest here in the areas of ICT, agriculture and other potential areas. 

The British parliamentary delegation is scheduled to call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the Ganobhaban on January 28.

They will visit Tungipara to pay respect to Father of the Nation of Bangladesh, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at his Mausoleum.

This would be the first time a British parliamentary delegation is visiting the Bangabandhu Mausoleum at Tungipara.

The five-member parliamentary delegation led by Paul Scully, MP, former Conservative Minister for Tech and Digital Economy also comprises three Labour Party MPs namely Virendra Sharma, Vice Chair of All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Bangladesh and Chair of APPG on Indo-British, Neil Coyle, Member of UK House of Commons Select Committee on Foreign Affairs, Andrew Western, Opposition Whip at the House of Commons and Dominic Moffitt, Senior Parliamentary Assistant at House of Commons.

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