Bangladesh Health Minister Mohammed Nasim has said that Rohingya refugees will return to their homeland as soon as the international community and the UN pressurise Myanmar into repatriating them. “Bangladesh government has an extremely tolerant approach towards Rohingyas and we are also working to implement the Rohingya Repatriation deal,” Dhaka Times quoted Health Minister Mohammed Nasim as saying at a grants distribution program in Cox’s Bazar on Monday. Lauding the efforts of the locals of Cox’s Bazar for their unimaginable support towards Rohingyas, Nasim claimed that not a single Rohingya died without a treatment on Bangladesh soil.
Myanmar and Bangladesh had earlier this month formed Joint Working Group (JWG) to handle the repatriation of Rohingya refugees. The crucial JWG with 15 each from Bangladesh and Myanmar will oversee the repatriation of over 600,000 Rohingya refugees who have taken shelter in Bangladesh to escape ethnic violence in the latter. Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Huq will head the JWG from the Bangladesh side while the Myanmar side will be headed by Permanent Secretary at Myanmar Foreign Ministry Myint Thu.
More than 655,000 Rohingyas have crossed into Bangladesh since August 25, escaping a military crackdown in Rakhine state, which many countries and human rights bodies have described as ethnic cleansing. The military action was triggered after their posts became targets of terrorist attacks. There is global outrage over the distressing plight of dispossessed Rohingya in Bangladeshi camps currently. A majority of them left the Rakhine state at the end of August this year, recounting incidents of murder, rape and arson at the hands of the Myanmar Army.
On October 12, a United Nations’ report based on interviews conducted in Bangladesh found that brutal attacks against Rohingyas in the northern Rakhine state have been well-organised, coordinated and systematic, with the intent of not only driving the population out of Myanmar but preventing them from returning to their homes. The Rakhine state is home to a majority of Muslims in Myanmar, who have been denied citizenship and long faced persecution in the Buddhist-majority country, especially from the extremists.(ANI)