Chinese Ambassador to Bangladesh Li Jiming has said China stands ready to “mediate and promote” Rohingya repatriation in an “active manner” to help find a solution as soon as possible.
“As a Chinese saying goes, neighbours are just like family members who stand by each other. If the two neighbours and friends are in need of help, China won’t shy away from it,” he said here on Thursday.Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas and most of them entered Cox’s Bazar since August 25, 2017.
Ambassador Jiming has recently visited Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar what it says demonstrates the “strong determination” of China to uphold peace and stability and promote development and prosperity in the region.
The Chinese envoy said he visited Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar from September 15 to 17, accompanied by officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Disaster Management and Relief of Bangladesh and United Nations High Commission for Refugees.
The visit is the “latest embodiment” of China, as a good neighbour and friend of Bangladesh and Myanmar, making efforts on “mediating and facilitating repatriation” to resolve the Rohingya issue, said the Chinese Embassy in Dhaka.
In August 2017, violence broke out in Rakhine State, leading to large influx of Rohingyas into Bangladesh to seek shelter.
As a responsible partner, China has been playing an important role in mediating between Bangladesh and Myanmar and facilitating the repatriation process as well as handling the crisis, said the Embassy.In November 2017, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi visited Bangladesh and met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and then Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali of Bangladesh, proposing the three-phased solution to the problem, namely “cessation of violence, repatriation and development”, which has been welcomed by Bangladesh.
In June and September of 2018, Wang Yi held two rounds of informal meetings involving China, Bangladesh and Myanmar, during which an important consensus came to solve the problem properly.
In the recent two years, the Embassy says, China has been mediating between Bangladesh and Myanmar on various occasions, and trying its best to bring the two countries together in finding the way out.
The Chinese government has provided 2,000 tents, 3,000 blankets and 20 million RMB worth of rice to Bangladesh to help the Rohingyas.
During his trip, Ambassador Jiming went to camps in Teknaf and Ukhia upzilas in Cox’s Bazar, including the one on “zero line” along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border, visited the terrestrial and waterside transit centers built by the Bangladeshi government, and walked into the houses of Rohingyas to listen to their concerns and demands.
The Ambassador said the Rakhine State issue is a long-standing one with complicated dimensions of history, ethnicity, and religion.
“It’s China’s firm belief that dialogue and negotiation between Bangladesh and Myanmar are the only way forward, while the international community should play a constructive role as per the wishes of the two countries,” he said.