Bangladesh continues to bear the burden of over 1.1 million Rohingyas as no repatriation took place over the last four years amid “lack of initiative” from the Myanmar side and “inadequate steps” by the international community. .
The last exodus began on 25 August 2017, when violence broke out in Myanmar’s Rakhine State, forcing thousands of Rohingyas to seek shelter in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh shares borders with Myanmar and thinks stability in Myanmar is critically important in finding a durable solution for the Rohingyas who are victims of atrocity crimes.
In June this year, Bangladesh expressed “deep disappointment” over a new resolution on Myanmar at the United Nations General Assembly as "it has failed to recommend actions” on repatriation of the Rohingyas and failed to adequately reflect on the crisis.
The resolution did not include any recommendations or actions on the issue of repatriation of the Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar. Neither does it recognise or stress the need for creating a conducive environment in Rakhine for the safe, sustainable and dignified return.
The resolution also lacks determination to address root causes of the Rohingya crisis through collective means.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen said since there was no major violence in the Rakhine State in the last four years, repatriation can start under the supervision of a neutral international body.
Dr Momen recently suggested that an ASEAN-led observer team may be deployed in the Rakhine State to oversee the repatriation process.
Bangladesh remains "hopeful" about the repatriation of Rohingyas to their place of origin in Rakhine State despite the military government being in place considering the repatriation that took place in 1978 and 1992 (under military government), officials said.
Bangladesh had handed over a list of 840,000 Rohingyas to Myanmar for verification but the verification process by the Myanmar side was very slow, Dhaka says.
Repatriation attempt failed twice in November 2018 and August 2019 amid Rohingyas' lack of trust in the Myanmar government.
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.