An International Conference on the recognition of Bangladesh genocide and Resisting the ongoing Rohingyas Genocide in Myanmar was held in Geneva, Switzerland on 25 October 2019 at the permanent Bangladesh Mission in Geneva, Switzerland. The Conference was organised by Nirmul Committee’s Swiss Chapter and chaired by Central Nirmul Committee’s President Shahriar Kabir. Keynote presentation was made by Justice Shamsuddin Chowdhury Manik, Member Secretary, Citizens’ Commission for Investigating Rohingya Genocide in Myanmar.
Welcome address was given by Mr. Rahman Khalilur, President, Nirmul Committee, Switzerland followed by guest speakers Ms. Nicola Spafford Furey, Vice President, Earth Focus Foundation, Geneva, Switzerland, Dr. Lakhumal Luhana, General Secretary, World Sindhi Congress, UK, Mr. Thomas Hunecke, Human Rights Officer, Asia Pacific Region, UN High Commission for Human Rights, Geneva, Dr. Nasir Dashti, Executive President, Baloch Human Rights Council, UK, Mr. Tarun Kanti Chowdhury, Secretary, Nirmul Committee, Sweden, Dr. Manoj Kurian, Coordinator, World Council of Churches, Geneva, Switzerland, Mr. Ansar Ahmed Ullah, Nirmul Committee, UK, Writer & historian Mr. Priyajit Debsarkar, India, Mr. Munir Mengal, President, Baloch Voice, Geneva, Switzerland, Mr. Bikash Chowdhury Barua, Vice President, European Bangladesh Forum, The Netherlands, Guinea-Bissau, RADDHO Program Manager at the UN, General Secretary of Interfaith Institution, Mr. Tajul Islam, President, Swiss Awami League, and Mr. Devabrata Chakraborty, Counsellor, Bangladesh Mission, Geneva.
The conference titled “International Conference on Genocide : Historical Perspective and Current Reality “ passed a resolution that stated that participants of this Conference, attended by politicians, intellectuals, academics and human rights activists from Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Sweden, France, Belgium, Norway and Finland calls upon the international community and the UN to acknowledge all genocides, including the one that took place in Bangladesh in 1971, and encourage the victim nations to initiate trials of the mass murderers, and to lend support and assistance to those trials. The Conference holds the belief that, without proper trials, victims of genocide would be denied justice, and thus, future genocides would be encouraged.
The resolution also mentioned that while Pakistan has never officially admitted to their responsibility for the crimes of genocide committed in 1971 & because of such impunity, Pakistani Military is, at present engaged in carrying on genocidal activities in Balochistan and Sindh. Therefore, the global community is urged to take effective steps to stop the persecution and oppression of the Baloch, Sindhi, and other communities in Pakistan and to respect their demand for self-determination.
And finally, on the Rohingya issue it said that the UN must play a role in adopting a binding resolution that sets a timeline for repatriation of the Rohingyas to the Rakhine province in Myanmar. Therefore, the global community and the UNHCR are urged to take effective steps for speedy return of the displaced Rohingyas to Myanmar ensuring the full security and their citizenship.
The conference also expressed concern by pointing out that some extremist Islamist groups and NGO’s are trying to radicalize Rohingya youth in the refugee camps and promoting Jihadi ideas that may pose as a threat to regional and global security in future.