Momen calls on OIC to act on Rohingya crisis resolution

NEWS DESK

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has called on the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to take steps towards resolving the Rohingya crisis.

“Bangladesh, for humanitarian reasons, has provided shelter to nearly 12 lakh million Rohingya. However, delays in their repatriation to their home country have created immense economic, demographic, and environmental pressures on Bangladesh,” said Momen during a meeting of the OIC Contact Group on the Rohingya crisis held at the United Nations Headquarters on Tuesday (19 September).

Despite the signing of bilateral agreements with Myanmar for the repatriation of Rohingya refugees in 2017 and 2018, no significant progress has been made, said Momen, according to a press release by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“The uncertainty surrounding repatriation has left the Rohingya population disheartened, and security in and around the refugee camps has deteriorated, posing a threat to regional stability,” he said.

The foreign minister emphasised on finding a sustainable solution for the Rohingya crisis through voluntary and safe repatriation to Myanmar. “Bangladesh is working with Myanmar to ensure the safe and voluntary return of the Rohingya to their homeland.”

However, the international attention and support for the Rohingya crisis have reduced due to various global crises, resulting in only 30% of the necessary funding for humanitarian assistance to Rohingya refugees being available for 2023. This shortfall has led to a reduction in food rations for the refugees, said the minister.

Momen expressed gratitude to the OIC member countries for their humanitarian assistance and urged them to continue their support for the Rohingya refugees until their safe repatriation.

He also praised the initiative by Gambia, which took Myanmar to the International Court of Justice, over the Rohingya issue.

The meeting, presided over by OIC Secretary-General Hissein Brahim Taha, saw the participation of Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Gambia, Djibouti, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Brunei, and Senegal in discussions, signifying a united front in addressing this pressing global issue.

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