DHAKA- Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali today urged the international community to take effective measurers for addressing the root causes of the longstanding issue of influx of Rohinga refuges from Myanmar to Bangladesh.
"Constant presence of huge number of Myanmar Nationals has created a number of adverse effects on the overall socio-economic, political, demographic, environmental, and humanitarian and security situation of Cox's Bazaar and adjacent districts," he said.
The foreign minister said this when the visiting UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar Ms. Yanghee Lee called on him at his office here, a foreign ministry press release said.
The UN Special Rapporteur is currently in Bangladesh for a 3-day mission to Cox's Bazaar where she will visit various locations in Cox's Bazaar and interact with the newly arrived Myanmar population who fled the recent military atrocities in the Northern Rakhine of Myanmar.
During the meeting, Mahmood Ali apprised the Ms. Lee of the steps that the government of Bangladesh had taken vis-a-vis Myanmar refugees and the undocumented Myanmar nationals who entered Bangladesh over the years from the Rakhine State of Myanmar.
He informed her about the repatriation status of the refugees under an agreement negotiated by him in 1992 and informed that as many as 236,599 Rakhine Muslims had been repatriated under that agreement until it came to a halt in 2005.
The foreign minister also informed the UN Special Rapporteur about the initiatives of the government of Bangladesh to engage with Myanmar bilaterally through establishment of border liaison offices and introduction of dialogue on security cooperation.
He also highlighted about the endevours to foster regional connectivity involving Myanmar through BCIM and BIMSTEC and thus ensure sustainable development in the region.
During the meeting Mahmood Ali stressed on the peaceful resolution of the longstanding issue of influx from Myanmar to Bangladesh and sought support from international community in addressing the root causes of the problem.
The Special Rapporteur thanked the foreign minister for allowing her to undertake the visit in Bangladesh and the foreign minister assured her of all sort of cooperation during her mission.
Following the visit, the Special Rapporteur will issue an 'end of mission statement' and share her findings to the UN Human Rights Council which will be available online on March 13, 2017, the release added.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)