UN chief concerned over repatriation delay
Dhaka, June 13 : Bangladesh has shared the existing problems regarding the Rohingya issue with the UN and informed it about Myanmar’s non-cooperation in starting the repatriation.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam conveyed these to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres at a bilateral meeting on Rohingya issue and the celebration of birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in New York.
The UN chief expressed deep concern over the delay in Rohingya repatriation, Bangladesh Permanent Mission to the UN said in a statement on June 11 (local time).
Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.2 million Rohingyas who are living in camps in Cox’s Bazar. Most of them came here after Myanmar launched a brutal crackdown targeting the mainly-Muslim ethnic minority in the pretext of a ‘clearance operation’ on August 25, 2017.
State Minister Alam briefed Guterres about the latest situation.
Meanwhile in Dhaka, the government urged the international community to increase pressure on Myanmar so that it creates a congenial environment for safe and dignified repatriation of the Rohingyas.
Briefing diplomats stationed in Dhaka on Wednesday morning, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen strongly protested the fabricated remarks and disinformation spread by Myanmar officials.
He presented relevant facts and arguments to invalidate Myanmar’s allegations and also to expose Nay Pyi Taw’s disrespect to its obligations and commitments.
“We sincerely want Myanmar to take back its citizens. But Myanmar has repeatedly been breaching its promises,” said Dr Momen.
The repatriation was initially scheduled to begin in January last year but later the date was shifted to November 15. However, it is yet to happen.
Shahriar Alam also informed Guterres about steps to put Myanmar’s accountability issue over Rohingya crisis before the International Court.
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) recently called upon the ad hoc ministerial committee to take immediate measures to launch the case of Myanmar’s human rights violations against Rohingyas at the International Court of Justice on behalf of the OIC.
State Minister Alam requested the participation of the UN head and UN as a body in the celebration of Bangabandhu’s birth centenary and golden jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence.
Guterres lauded Bangladesh’s progress under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He thanked Bangladesh’s government and its people for their generosity and humanitarian assistance in the Rohingya issue.
He also praised Bangladesh for its active participation in climate issues, saying that the UN is looking forward to Bangladesh’s active and fruitful participation in the ensuing Climate Action Summit.
The UN chief thanked Bangladesh for its outstanding contribution to UN peacekeeping mission.
Foreign Secretary M Shahidul Haque and Permanent Representative (PR) of Bangladesh to the UN Ambassador Masud Bin Momen were present in the bilateral meeting.
State Minister Alam also spoke to Jean-Pierre Lacroix, the Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations. Alam informed him about Prime Minister Hasina’s commitment to ensuring world peace and security.
Lacroix praised Bangladesh’s continuous participation and progress in UN peacekeeping mission. He requested Alam to cooperate and contribute to UN head’s action for peacekeeping agenda.
Alam informed Lacroix that Bangladesh will continue its women empowerment and be a ‘champion country’ in UN head’s action for peacekeeping agenda.
The state minister also requested him to appoint high level officers in peacekeeping operations from Bangladesh.