Dhaka – Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has criticized Myanmar for lingering return of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims, who fled a brutal crackdown at home, over various excuses.
“They (Myanmar) are lingering the process making various excuses,” the Prime Minister said on Wednesday in a scripted answer to a question by a lawmaker in parliament. She mentioned that the repatriation of Rohingya was supposed to have been completed in two years according to a bilateral agreement.
Hasina expressed concern that the security and stability of Bangladesh might be hampered if the huge number of Rohingya are not returned.
“It is very difficult for us to arrange foods, clothes and accommodations for over 1,100,000 (1.1 million) forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals for an indefinite time and there is an apprehension of hampering security and stability of Bangladesh, if we can’t send them back soon,” she added.
Hasina said her government has been continuing diplomatic efforts with Myanmar alongside international and regional forums to send back the refugees.
Nearly 750,000 Rohingya Muslims crossed into Bangladesh after Myanmar launched a military crackdown in August 2017. The rest others landed in Bangladesh in the past decades as Myanmar army evicted them from their homes.
Hasina said the world leaders are currently putting immense pressure on Myanmar to stop inhuman torture on Rohingya and they urge for repatriation of their citizens.
Various international organizations and forums, such as Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), a platform of 57 Muslim countries, Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) and Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) have been working to mount pressure on Myanmar to return their nationals, she said.
She added the government has been working tirelessly for a permanent solution to the crisis since the very beginning.
“We have given shelter to the Rohingyas for a temporary basis on the humanitarian ground despite having limited resources. But, unfortunately, it is true that the situation has got no visible progress due to rigid stance of Myanmar government.
Hasina criticized Myanmar for conducting propaganda that the repatriation process has been delayed because of Bangladesh.
It is the duty of Myanmar government to take Rohingya back to their home and they will have to take effective measures for their safety, she said.