Tuesday, 26 October, 2021

UN must go beyond rhetoric

UN must go beyond rhetoric

Speaking at this year’s UN General Assembly, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina once against pleaded to the global community to take effective measures for Rohingya repatriation. She clearly said that the world community needs to go beyond words and rhetoric and instead take tangible action to successfully repatriate Rohingyas from Bangladesh to Myanmar which is the cherished desire of the forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals.

Rohingya crisis has now entered into five years. The global community highly praised Bangladesh for temporarily sheltering more than one million Rohingyas who fled persecution and genocide in Myanmar. Over the years we held high hopes that these displaced people could go back to their own homes in their motherland Myanmar in safety, security and dignity. Bangladesh and the displaced Rohingyas reposed trust in the global assembly and community for their repatriation.

But unfortunately the international community including the UN so far couldn’t adequately pressurise Myanmar to stop persecution on minorities and to take back its displaced nationals. We bemoan the UN’s ineffective role in solving this crisis. Going by the look of things, it seems some foreign organisations want the Rohingyas to settle permanently in Bangladesh.

Against this backdrop, we agree with Prime Minister that whatever Bangladesh is doing is temporary and that the Rohingyas must return to their country of origin.

It can be reckoned that as many as 1.1 million Rohingyas took shelter in Bangladesh in 2016 to save their lives from a military crackdown in Myanmar which the UN had described as a textbook case of ethnic cleansing. Since then the Rohingyas were sheltered in several camps in Cox’s Bazar. Alarmingly, around two hundred thousand Rohingyas have fled from camp and sneaked into the localities. They are getting themselves involved in a host of crimes including drug and arms smuggling, human trafficking, militancy etc, posing a grave threat to Bangladesh’s internal security.

In order to tackle the worsening problem, the government is fencing the camps and creating planned accommodation for a good number of Rohingyas in Bhasan char. These are temporary solution. Repatriation of the Rohingyas to their homeland is the only permanent solution since they are Myanmar nationals. International community must do everything possible to make this happen.