The Financial Express

Relocation may create new obstacles to resolving Rohingya crisis, BNP says

| Updated: December 17, 2020 21:15:57

-FE file photo -FE file photo

BNP on Monday strongly opposed the relocation of Rohingyas to Bhashan Char, saying it has manifested the government’s ‘limitless diplomatic and political failures’ to resolve the problem.

In a press conference at BNP Chairperson’s Gulshan office, party Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir alleged that the government has taken the Bhashan Char project to indulge in corruption and cover-up its failures to repatriate Rohingyas to their motherland in Myanmar.

“The process of relocating some Rohingya refugees to Bhashan Char, ignoring the objections by the United Nations and other international organisations, is a clear example of the boundless diplomatic and political failures of the present government which has no public mandate,” he said.

Stating that Rohingyas have been given shelter in Bangladesh for a temporary period, Fakhrul said the construction of such permanent housing in Bhashan Char may create new obstacles to resolving the main problem.

He feared that the permanent infrastructure that has been built and is being built in Bhashan Char for the Rohingya refugees may lead to the perception among the Myanmar authorities that Bangladesh is accepting the Rohingyas permanently.

The BNP leader said the main crisis over the repatriation of Rohingyas may deepen further through the relocation of Myanmar’s persecuted citizens to Bhashan Char despite the objection by the international community.

He said it is now necessary to mount multidimensional pressure on Myanmar with the help of the UN and other international organisations to overcome the Rohingya crisis instead of wasting time in the name of relocating the refugees to Bhashan Char.

“The safe return of Rohingyas to Myanmar must be ensured for a durable solution to the crisis,” Fakhrul observed.

He said the role of the UN, regional organisations and world power must be ensured through effective diplomacy in resolving the Rohingya crisis.”

He also said establishing a democratic system of government in Bangladesh can play an effective role in resolving the Rohingya problem.

In the face of growing concerns over the extreme congestion in the camps of Cox’s Bazar and avert any risk of death due to landslides and other unwarranted incidents, the government decided to relocate, in phases, 1,00,000 Rohingyas out of the total 1.1 million to Bhashan Char.

Accordingly, in the first phase, more than 1600 Rohingyas, who expressed their willingness voluntarily for relocation, were shifted to Bhashan Char on December 4.

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