Ex-FS Haque sees “planned plot” behind military coup in Myanmar

Former Foreign Secretary Shahidul Haque on Monday said there is a “planned plot” behind the current military coup in Myanmar which has not been revealed yet.

He said since the country’s State Counselor was born and raised in a military family, she had always good relations with the military.

While addressing a webinar, Haque said there was little difference between her views on the Rohingya and the current military junta in Myanmar.

The Former Foreign Secretary also stressed that Bangladesh’s strategy should be adopted by understanding this situation.

The Centre for Peace Studies (CPS) under the South Asian Institute of Policy and Governance (SIPG) of North South University organised the webinar to discuss the impacts of military coup in Myanmar on the Rohingya crisis.

Brigadier General (Retd) M Sakhawat Hossain, Senior Fellow of SIPG, Ambassador Shahidul Haque, Prof Lailufar Yasmin of Dhaka University, and faculty of Sultan Joynal Abedin University from Malaysia, Dr Mahbubul Haque joined the webinar as panelists.

The issue of Rohingyas being stateless and seeking refuge in Bangladesh, for more than four decades, has drawn global attention in 2016-2017 when more than 700,000 Rohingya refugees from Myanmar fled to Bangladesh to escape genocide.

NSU Professorial Fellow Ambassador Shahidul Haque emphasised the need to strengthen the process of justice for the Rohingya genocide in the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

He also stressed that Bangladesh’s strategy should be adopted by understanding this situation.

The webinar provided feedback on the military rule of various ethnic groups living in Myanmar, including the Rohingya community living in Bangladesh and Malaysia.

In addition, the geopolitical context, its impacts on Bangladesh-Myanmar bilateral relations, and the lack of a strong role in the Western world also came up for discussions.

Speaking on the state of democracy in Myanmar, Prof Lailufar Yasmin said that the fight for democracy is not actually for democracy because the military rule is constitutionally sanctioned.

SIPG senior fellow Dr Sakhawat Hossain pointed out the impacts of Myanmar’s military rule on the Rohingya crisis mentioning that the country’s State Counselor had never had good relations with Myanmar in the past.

Dr. Mahbubul Haquek, from Malaysia, focused on the regional political dynamics.

He thinks that ASEAN is silent on the issue because of its non-interference policy, which is unfortunate.

After the military coup in Myanmar, there has not been much official protest in other Southeast Asian countries. The common people of those countries, however, staged some protests.

He also highlighted limited “our knowledge” about Myanmar, which serves as an obstacle to resolving the Rohingya issue.

Dr Ishrat Zakia Sultana, CPS Coordinator, moderated the session while NSU’s Confucius Institute director Dr. Bulbul Siddiqui delivered the welcome speech.

Among others, Prof Sk. Tawfique Haque, Director of SIPG and CPS, faculties, researchers, and representatives of international organisations also joined the webinar.