Tokyo against “prolongation” of Rohingya “situation”

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Tokyo against “prolongation” of Rohingya “situation”

It shares ideas with Dhaka to expedite repatriation efforts

Sun Online Desk  > 1st August, 2019 03:06:44

Japanese Foreign Minister Tara Kono

Japan has shared some “preliminary ideas” with Bangladesh that can help expedite the Rohingya repatriation process as the country, being a common friend of Bangladesh and Myanmar, does not want to see “prolongation” of the Rohingya situation.

Japanese Foreign Minister Tara Kono floated the ideas during a bilateral meeting with his Bangladesh counterpart Dr AK Abdul Momen on Tuesday evening. “Minister Kono clearly mentioned that we don’t want prolongation of this situation. We do hope that the situation (repatriation process) will be expedited,” said Deputy Press Secretary of the Japanese government Jun Saito.

While talking to a small group of journalists, including the UNB correspondent, the spokesperson of the Japanese Foreign Minister’s visit said and Minister Kono wants to play a certain role in expediting the “situation” (Rohingya repatriation process).

The Japanese Foreign Minister, who visited Bangladesh thrice and Rohingya camps two times, is now in Myanmar to discuss Rohingya issues with Myanmar leadership. “I can’t prejudge what will happen tomorrow (during meetings with Myanmar leadership),” said Jun Saito adding that Japan has been telling Myanmar to demonstrate progress in a visible way.

Responding to a question, the Japanese official said Minister Kono did not use the specific word “mediation” but used the word “dialogue” that Japan can promote between Bangladesh and Myanmar. “When he (Minister Kono) visits this region, it’s always Bangladesh and Myanmar. He never visits just one,” Saito said asking reporters not to expect any breaking news instantly but perhaps there is some development on that in the coming days. The Japanese Foreign Minister, at the meeting, showed his concern about the prolonged displacement of people from Myanmar and reiterated that Japan will continue to support Bangladesh and Myanmar’s efforts for early repatriation of Rohingyas.

Saito said Japan, being a friend of both Bangladesh and Myanmar, is trying hard to help understand the situation. He said there is a bilateral issue at the base of this and it needs engagement and involvement of international society.

While visiting Rohingya camps, the Japanese Foreign Minister showed a very strong commitment to helping expedite the dialogue between the two countries. It was a very long day, social dinner with your foreign minister – Kono -has been thrice in this country already, Saito said. “We spent around two hours in the camp and had conversation and dialogue with the representatives of the displaced people,” said the Japanese official.

It was Minister Kono’s second time in Cox’s Bazar after his first visit in 2017 when he had spent 30 minutes; Saito said there was a great improvement of the situation on the ground. Minister Kono showed his very high appreciation over the Bangladesh efforts in accepting and sheltering Rohingya people and having continuous dialogue under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s leadership.

He asked Minister Momen to continue such dialogue for the repatriation of displaced people reiterated Japanese position shared by all the concerned players — a safe, voluntary and dignified return of Rohingyas.

On Tuesday, Dr Momen said Japan proposed to play a role as a mediator in Tokyo taking Bangladesh and Myanmar on board to find a peaceful solution to Rohingya crisis ensuring their safe return to their place of origin in Rakhine State. “Bangladesh will consider the proposal,” he told reporters after the bilateral meeting with his Japanese counterpart Kono mentioning that Bangladesh is looking for the resumption of Rohingya repatriation.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe showed his deep respect for the government of Bangladesh for generously accepting and protecting the Rohingyas on humanitarian ground and the two countries share the importance of stability in Cox’s Bazar from the perspective of enhancing connectivity and securing regional stability, another official said.

On May 29, Prime Minister Abe held a 50-minute meeting with his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina in Japan and discussed ways to find a “durable and early solution” to the Rohingya crisis.

Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas and most of them entered the country since August 25, 2017. Bangladesh and Myanmar signed the repatriation deal on November 23, 2017. On January 16, 2018, Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a document on “Physical Arrangement”, which was supposed to facilitate the return of Rohingyas to their homeland.

The “Physical Arrangement” stipulates that the repatriation will be completed preferably within two years from the start of repatriation. The first batch of Rohingyas was scheduled to return on November 15 last year but it was halted amid unwillingness of Rohingyas to return for lack of a congenial environment in Rakhine.

Source: https://www.daily-sun.com/post/412156/2019/08/01/Tokyo-against %E2%80%9 Cprolongation%E2%80%9D-of-Rohingya-%E2%80%9Csituation%E2%80%9D

Posted in International, Media, Myanmar, Publication, Report, Rohingya

Myanmar targets remnants of Rohingya identity

Home > Myanmar targets remnants of Rohingya identity

Myanmar targets remnants of Rohingya identity 

AZEEM IBRAHIM > July 31, 201917:34                                A Rohingya village obliterated by fire in Rakhine, Myanmar. (Reuters)
The 1 million-plus Rohingya huddled in refugee camps around Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh continue to be a stain on the conscience of the international community, two years after the military of Myanmar started its “clearing operations” to remove them from their native homeland in northern Rakhine State.

Perhaps it is for that reason that both the international community and the government of Bangladesh talk and behave as if the displacement of the Rohingya is not, and cannot be, accepted as a permanent state of affairs. And, for their part, the authorities of Myanmar are humoring Bangladesh and the rest of the international community with various “plans” to resettle the Rohingya in the country of their birth.

The problem is that most of those wanting to return will not be able to return to their homes — most of those have already been destroyed. So they would have to move into some sort of government-built camps: That is to say, internally displaced people’s camps likely administered and overseen by the very people who conducted the original “clearing operations.”

Some 128,000of the quarter of a million Rohingya still in Myanmar had been held in just such camps until late last year in conditions akin to concentration camps. And, when the government of Myanmar finally succumbed to international pressure over the conditions in those camps, their “closure” manifested almost entirely in the rebuilding of the housing in those areas. But the people themselves are still effectively captives in the very same areas, with no right to travel and cut out from most services and from employment.

The most striking findings of a recently published analysis of satellite imagery from Rakhine State by the International Cyber Policy Centre at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute are that the government of Myanmar is still engaged in an active process of razing abandoned and/or burnt Rohingya villages (almost 400 villages in the past six months or so), while so-called preparations for accepting Rohingya returnees from Bangladesh are “minimal.”

This is not the behavior of a state that understands it has committed genocide against one of its indigenous peoples and is looking to make amends. This is the behavior of a state that is putting the finishing touches on erasing every last physical trace that the Rohingya were ever in Rakhine State.

   “ The government of Myanmar is still engaged in an active process of razing abandoned and/or burnt Rohingya villages.”  Dr. Azeem Ibrahim

Myanmar’s strategy is fully transparent: Rhetorically yielding to international pressure, making “plans” for the resettlement of the refugees, agreeing accords with Bangladesh and so on, while signaling in no uncertain terms to the Rohingya themselves that they have nothing to return to and that they will not be safe if they do return. And, when the Rohingya do the sensible thing and refuse voluntary resettlement, Myanmar can wash its hands of its responsibility for them.

For the time being, the authorities in Myanmar are unhappy that the Rohingya still have a claim to their former lands in northern Rakhine State. But, as the traces of their villages are erased and as more time passes, more and more of the few Rohingya remaining in the country yield to the pressure and flee. And, as the localization of the largest proportion of Rohingya over the border in Bangladesh becomes the new normal, the claim the Rohingya have to their ancestral lands and to citizenship in the country of their birth will have been successfully erased.

Genocide rarely looks like an episode of frenzied killing like in Rwanda. And the essence of genocide is killing an identity as much as killing the people who subscribe to that identity. Myanmar is not currently wholesale slaughtering Rohingya, now that most of them have successfully made it across the border into Bangladesh, but the authorities in Myanmar are quietly ploughing on with destroying everything related to Rohingya identity and their history that is still in their reach.

 Dr. Azeem Ibrahim is a Director at the Center for Global Policy and author of “The Rohingyas: Inside Myanmar’s Genocide” (Hurst, 2017). Twitter: @AzeemIbrahim
Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Arab News’ point-of-view

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Protect the Rohingya – Cartoon

Shabnam Mayet to Protect the RohingyaJuly 30 at 5:16 PM

Source:https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10161996715040384&set=gm.2246945332068319&type=3&theater

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Work for safe Rohingya return

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Work for safe Rohingya return

PM’s security adviser tells int’l organisations

Staff Correspondent > 30th July, 2019 11:06:59

Security Affairs Adviser to the Prime Minister Major General (retd) Tarique Ahmed Siddique speaks at the      “Second Meeting of Track 1.5 BIMSTEC Security Dialogue Forum” at Bangladesh Institute of International        and Strategic Studies (BIISS) auditorium in the city on Tuesday. —SUN photo

 Security Affairs Adviser to the Prime Minister Major General (retd) Tarique Ahmed Siddique on Tuesday urged the international organizations to work for safe repatriation of Rohingyas.

The security adviser said this while speaking at the “Second Meeting of Track 1.5 BIMSTEC Security Dialogue Forum” as the chief guest at Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS) auditorium.

Secretary General of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Ambassador M Shahidul Islam and acting Foreign Secretary Kamrul Ahsan also spoke at the inaugural session chaired by BIISS Director General AKM Abdur Rahman.

Speaking on the occasion, Tarique Ahmed Siddique said Bangladesh is now in a position to talk to its neighbour Myanmar with tremendous international support from various countries.

Prime Minister’s Security Affairs Adviser also feared that over 1.1 million nationals of Myanmar will pose security threat not only to Bangladesh but also the countries in this region. Highlighting various security threats, the security affair adviser said cooperative security is an ideal approach to address the regional security.

NGOs are mainly trying to make Rohingyas stay here comfortably, but not doing anything to create a safe environment in Myanmar for their repatriation, he said. “I always say, please do something on the other side. Otherwise, these people won’t dare to go back because they will find themselves again in an awkward position.”

The adviser said Bangladesh has always shown firm commitment towards stronger regional cooperation and BIMSTEC is an outcome of that commitment. Ambassador Shahidul Islam highlighted BIMSTEC activities and ways to extend further cooperation among the member states of BIMSTEC. Acting foreign secretary Kamrul Ahsan emphasized strengthening cooperation among BIMSTEC countries.

Tag:Work for safe Rohingya return

Source: https://www.daily-sun.com/post/411854/2019/07/31/Work-for-safe-Rohingya-return-

Posted in International, Media, Myanmar, Publication, Report, Rohingya

Japan offers to mediate Rohingya crisis

Home > Rohingya Crisis
Published:  11:12 PM, 30 July 2019

Japan offers to mediate Rohingya crisis

Asian Age Online

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen conveyed it to reporters after a bilateral meeting with his Japanese counterpart Tara Kono at State Guesthouse Meghna on 30 July 2019.Photo- PID

Japan has proposed to play a role as mediator in Tokyo taking Bangladesh and Myanmar onboard to find a peaceful solution to Rohingya crisis ensuring their safe return to their place of origin in Rakhine State. Bangladesh will consider the proposal as it is looking for the resumption of Rohingya repatriation. 

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen conveyed it to reporters after a bilateral meeting with his Japanese counterpart Tara Kono at State guesthouse Meghna on Tuesday evening. The Japanese Minister, who visited Rohingya camp, will leave for Yangon on Wednesday to talk to Myanmar leadership over the Rohingya issue.

Dr Momen said his Japanese counterpart will convey Bangladesh’s message to Myanmar authorities apart from sharing his own observation.  Bangladesh conveyed to Japan that Japanese investment both in Bangladesh and Myanmar will be affected if the Rohingya crisis remains unresolved for long as he fears pockets of radicalism.

The two sides stressed the need for necessary steps to be taken by the Myanmar government to create an environment conducive to the return of the Rohingyas under UN cooperation. The Japanese Foreign Minister, who arrived here on Monday night, also visited Rohingya camps on Tuesday to see the situation on the ground and had a brief dialogue with Rohingya representatives in a transit camp to understand their perspective as a whole.

At the bilateral meeting, the two sides discussed bilateral issues with a greater focus on Rohingya crisis and strengthening further the ties with Bangladesh on all fronts. The two countries discussed ways to further develop the bilateral relationship through various initiatives at various levels toward the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations in 2022.

Bangladesh has already expressed its support for Japan’s aspiration to become a permanent member of the UNSC and for Japan’s candidature for the UNSC non-permanent membership election in 2022. He also visited Bangabandhu Memorial Museum in the city to pay tributes to Father of the Nation Bagabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The Foreign Minister hosted dinner in hour of his Japanese counterpart.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe showed his deep respect for the government of Bangladesh for generously accepting and protecting the Rohingyas on humanitarian ground and the two countries share the importance of stability in Cox’s Bazar from the perspective of enhancing connectivity and securing regional stability, another official said.

On May 29, Prime Minister Abe held a 50-minute meeting with his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina in Japan, and discussed ways to find a “durable and early solution” to the Rohingya crisis. Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas and most of them entered the country since August 25, 2017.

Bangladesh and Myanmar signed the repatriation deal on November 23, 2017. On January 16, 2018 Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a document on “Physical Arrangement”, which was supposed to facilitate the return of Rohingyas to their homeland.

The “Physical Arrangement” stipulates that the repatriation will be completed preferably within two years from the start of repatriation. The first batch of Rohingyas was scheduled to return on November 15 last year but it was halted amid unwillingness of Rohingyas to return for lack of a congenial environment in Rakhine.

Source: https://dailyasianage.com/news/188972/japan-offers-to-mediate-rohingya-crisis

Posted in International, Media, Myanmar, Publication, Report, Rohingya

Japan offers to mediate Rohingya crisis

Home > Bangladesh >Rohingya Crisis

Japan offers to mediate Rohingya crisis

 Tribune Desk >  Published at 11:50 pm July 30th, 2019

Japanese Foreign Minister Tara Kono calls on his Bangladesh counterpart Dr AK Abdul Momen at the state guesthouse Meghna in Dhaka on Tuesday, July 30, 2019 – PID

The Japanese foreign minister will leave for Yangon on Wednesday to talk to the Myanmar leadership over the Rohingya issue

 Japan has proposed to play a role as mediator in Tokyo taking Bangladesh and Myanmar onboard to find a peaceful solution to Rohingya crisis ensuring their safe return to their place of origin in Rakhine State. Bangladesh will consider the proposal as it is looking for the resumption of Rohingya repatriation.

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen conveyed it to reporters after a bilateral meeting with his Japanese counterpart Tara Kono at the state guesthouse Meghna in Dhaka on Tuesday evening, reports UNB.

Kono will leave for Yangon on Wednesday to talk to the Myanmar leadership over the Rohingya issue. Momen said Kono will convey Bangladesh’s message to Myanmar authorities apart from sharing his own observation.

Bangladesh conveyed to Japan that Japanese investment both in Bangladesh and Myanmar will be affected if the Rohingya crisis remains unresolved for long as he fears pockets of radicalism. The two sides stressed the need for necessary steps to be taken by the Myanmar government to create an environment conducive to the return of the Rohingyas under UN cooperation.

The Japanese foreign minister arrived in Bangladesh on Monday night on a three-day official visit. He visited the Kutupalong refugee camp in Ukhiya, Cox’s Bazar on Tuesday morning to see the situation on the ground and had a brief dialogue with the Rohingya representatives in a transit camp to understand their perspective.

At the bilateral meeting later in the day, the two ministers also discussed bilateral issues with a greater focus on the Rohingya crisis and strengthening further the ties with Bangladesh on all fronts. Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas. For their repatriation, Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a deal on November 23, 2017.

On January 16, 2018, the countries also signed a document on “Physical Arrangement,” which was supposed to facilitate the return of Rohingyas to their homeland preferably within two years. The first batch of Rohingyas was scheduled to return on November 15 last year, but it was halted amid unwillingness of Rohingyas to return for lack of a congenial environment in Rakhine.

‘Rohingya flow still continues’

Meanwhile, Law Minister Anisul Huq on Tuesday told the United Nation that the flow of Rohingyas into Bangladesh, albeit low, still continues. He gave the information to the UN Committee against Torture while submitting a report, which highlighted Bangladesh’s two priority sectors — protecting human rights and providing shelter to forcibly displaced Rohingyas in the country, reports UNB.

A 19-member delegation, including senior secretary to the Law Ministry, the foreign secretary and permanent representative of Bangladesh to UN, had accompanied him to the UN office.

Anisul said: “We’ve opened our border to 700,000 Rohingyas [since August 2017] and allocated over 6,000 acres of forest land allowing environmental degradation and social instability in the area for sheltering them for the sake of humanity in 2016.”

As a host to 1.1 million Rohingyas, he said, Bangladesh maintained the principle of non-refoulement, despite significant resource constraints and challenges.

The report submitted by Bangladesh to the UN committee was prepared in accordance with procedural obligations under the Convention against Torture. The country became a state party to the Convention on October 5, 1998 through accession.

Anisul in the report focused on three aspects of the Convention – legal, administrative and judicial actions taken by the government for implementing the Convention. The minister in the report marked two priority sectors — curbing violence against women and children and the forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals from Rakhine State — for Bangladesh. Additional Reporting by Abdul Aziz from Cox’s Bazar

Tags: Rohingya crisis, Japan

Source: https://dhakatribune.com/bangladesh/rohingya-crisis/2019/07/30/japan-offers-to-mediate-rohingya-crisis/    

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Give Rohingyas citizenship or a separate state, says Mahathir

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 Give Rohingyas citizenship or a separate state, says Mahathir

28th July, 2019 09:50:03

Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad

KUALA LUMPUR: The Rohingyas should be treated as Myanmar nationals or be given a chance to form their own state, said Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, reports a Malaysian daily on Sunday.

He said even though Malaysia generally does not wish to interfere with the internal affairs of other countries, but was forced to do so in the case of Rohingyas who were massacred in Myanmar. “Myanmar, of course, at one time was made up of many different states. But the British decided to rule Myanmar as one state – and because of that, many of the tribes (were) included in the state of Burma.

“But now they should either be treated as nationals or they should be given their territory to form their own state,” he said in an interview with Turkey’s Anadolu Agency in Ankara during his four-day visit to the country.

In 2017, more than 700,000 ethnic Rohingya were driven from Rakhine state following a military-led crackdown that a United Nations’ report said included mass killings and gang rapes. Former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra‘ad al-Hussein, told the Human Rights Council that the episode was a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing”, according to the UN website.

Meanwhile, asked to comment on the plight of the Uighur in China, Mahathir said Malaysia has always advocated for the settlement of conflicts through negotiation, arbitration or court of law. “We should tell China (to) please treat these people as citizens. The fact that they have a different religion should not influence the treatment towards them. When you resort to violence, then it’s very difficult to find a good conclusion because there has been no case where violence has achieved the objective,” he said.

Meanwhile, on Turkey’s fight against the Fetullah Terrorist Organisation (FETO) both inside and outside the country, Dr Mahathir said Malaysia does not support insurrection in any country. “It is our policy not to be used as a base for action taken against other countries. It is for that reason that when we find that there are some attempts to make use of Malaysia as a base for dissent against the Turkish government, we have taken action to close these (FETO-linked) schools” he said.

Tags: Give Rohingyas citizenship or a separate state

Source: https://www.daily-sun.com/post/411168?fbclid=IwAR1Y9yChPAEt7jnVRkhSKB90U50UR 7RV5BlyhSChIcv-CsIKwS7faQjR0fw 

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