Four European diplomats have urged the international community to work jointly to help ensure conducive conditions for safe and sustainable return of the Rohingyas to Myanmar’s Rakhine state.
“We note with concern that the conditions for repatriation of Rohingya refugees to Rakhine State in a voluntary, safe, dignified and sustainable manner are not yet met. The international community must work jointly to urge and support steps by Myanmar towards a situation where this will be possible,” they said in a joint statement yesterday.
It comes after the four ambassadors -- Winnie Petersen of Denmark, Sidsel Bleken of Norway, Charlotta Schlyter of Sweden and René Holenstein of Switzerland embassies in Dhaka -- visited the Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar on September 25-26.
Two repatriation efforts over the last two years failed as the Rohingyas refused to return saying that they do not have guarantee of citizenship and safety in Rakhine.
The four ambassadors lauded Bangladesh’s government and people for their continued humanitarian and other assistance.
They said the UN agencies, NGOs and INGOs involved in humanitarian response are playing instrumental roles in Cox’s Bazar.
“We encourage the government of Bangladesh to continue its close collaboration with the humanitarian organisations,” said the statement. The four diplomats said a safe and secure situation in the camps and surrounding areas must be upheld for both refugees and host communities.