Bangladesh proposes UN-run ‘safe zone’ for Myanmar refugees

Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha | Published: 16:46, Sep 10,2017


President M Abdul Hamid on Sunday proposed creation of a ‘safe zone’ for displaced Myanmar nationals under UN initiatives and supports of organisations like OIC as he met his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on OIC summit sidelines in Kazakhstan capital of Astana.

‘A ‘safe zone’ for displaced Mymanmar nationals to be run-by the United Nations or the OIC and other international organisations can be established to ensure their safe return at Rakhine State,’ he said during a bilateral meeting with Erdogan.

President Hamid also urged global leaders to put pressure on the Myanmar to implement the Kofi Annan Commission recommendation to establish minority Rohingya Muslims rights at their homeland in the country’s northern Rakhine state.

He said surges of refugees fleeing their home to evade persecution exposed the densely populated Bangladesh to a great difficulty causing socioeconomic and environmental problems.

He urged the Turkish leader also to mount pressure on Myanmar along with other world leaders to take back its nationals and ensure their rights to live with dignity in Rakhine State where they lived for generations.

President Hamid thanked Erdogan for the Turkish first lady and foreign minister’s recent Bangladesh visit to see the Rohingyas plight as they continued to take refuge in Cox’s Bazar for the past several years while nearly three lakh of them arrived as the latest spate of violence erupted in Rakhine on August 25.

He also thanked the Turkey president for taking an initiative to arrange a special session on Rohingya issue in the OIC Summit.

President Erdogan said Turkey has already sent 1000 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Bangladesh for the Rohingya refugees and assured of sending more 10,000 tonnes immediately and added that Istanbul would take necessary steps so that the other countries also extend their hands in the form of aid for Rohingyas through Bangladesh.

Top government officials from both Bangladesh and Turkey were present at the meeting.

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