Bangladesh asks Myanmar to repatriate Rohingya early


Bangladesh has called upon Myanmar for an early commencement of repatriating Rohingya people to lessen the colossal burden of hosting them.

Dhaka also urged an expeditious verification of eligibility for return, security, livelihood and wellbeing of the returnees.

Bangladesh urged these at the fifth meeting of the Joint Working Group (JWG) on the Repatriation of displaced people of Rakhine State of Myanmar temporarily sheltered in Bangladesh, which was held virtually, a foreign ministry press release said.

Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen and Myanmar Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs U Chan Aye led the respective sides.

The JWG held substantive discussions on all issues related to voluntary, safe, dignified and sustainable repatriation of the displaced people to their homeland.

Both the sides agreed to work on addressing verification related problems and holding regular meetings of JWG and Technical Working Group for early commencement of repatriation, the release added.

Earlier on 19 December 2017, the JWG consisting of government representatives from Myanmar and Bangladesh was subsequently formed to start repatriating displaced Rohingyas. The JWG held its first meeting on 15 January 2018 in Naypiydaw, Myanmar.

Since August 25 in 2017, Bangladesh has been hosting over 1.2 million forcefully displaced Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar district and most of them arrived there after a military crackdown by Myanmar, which the UN called a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing” and other rights groups dubbed as “genocide”.

Myanmar, however, is yet to return a single Rohingya in the last nearly five years while repatriation attempts failed twice due to trust deficit among the Rohingyas about their safety and security in Rakhine state.

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