11:37 AM, February 15, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:44 AM, February 15, 2019
Dhaka seeks OIC support for ‘safe zone’ for Rohingyas in Myanmar
In this undated AFP file photo, Rohingya refugees queue for food at the Kutupalong refugee camp in Bangladesh.
Star Online Report
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam has sought the support of OIC member states for creating a conducive situation in Myanmar for the Rohingyas’ safe and dignified return.
The state minister came up with the call while briefing OIC ambassadors and delegates about the evolving situation with the crisis at an OIC meeting yesterday, said a press release issued by Bangladesh Foreign Ministry today. He raised the possibility of creating a civilian “safe zone” for the returning Rohingyas in Myanmar, to be monitored by the human rights and humanitarian outfits in the concerned regional context.
Shahriar Alam also shared information on the government’s plans to relocate a portion of the Rohingya population in Cox’s Bazar to the Bhashan Char island in consultation with all concerned stakeholders. “By opening our borders to the persecuted Rohingyas, Bangladesh has not only saved lives but also stabilised the entire region,” the junior minister said.
The international community has a shared responsibility to help restore the Rohingyas’ fundamental rights and freedoms, including their right to return to Myanmar in safety and dignity, said Shahriar Alam. The junior minister of Bangladesh arrived in Geneva on Wednesday to attend the launch of the UN Joint Response Plan for the Rohingya Humanitarian Crisis for 2019. The launch will take place at an event at the UN today.
The OIC ambassadors and delegates from Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan, Lebanon, Jordan, Libya, State of Palestine and the Maldives reaffirmed their solidarity with the forcibly displaced Rohingya and commended Bangladesh for its generosity in hosting them.
The OIC member states also reiterated their commitment to help find a peaceful and lasting solution to the crisis through sustained engagement in the relevant human rights and humanitarian fora in Geneva. State Minister Alam also had a bilateral meeting with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, where they discussed the latest developments with the Rohingya crisis.