It has become extremely necessary to increase international pressure on Myanmar for facilitating immediate repatriation and giving citizenship to Rohingyas who fled to Bangladesh fearing persecution in Rakhine State, speakers said yesterday.
They were addressing a roundtable titled “One year of Rohingya problem” organised by Bangla daily Prothom Alo, in association with United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (Unicef) at the newspaper's office in Dhaka.
“It is also necessary to provide real history, as the Myanmar army is branding Rohingyas as Bangalees”, they said.
Prothom Alo Associate Editor Abdul Qayyum moderated the session.
“Government is taking steps to repatriate Rohingyas but the process may get delayed as we are getting bad signals,” said Social Welfare Minister Rashed Khan Menon while addressing the programme as the chief guest.
“One lakh Rohingya were shifted to Bhashanchar; what about the remaining 10 lakhs? We have to bring the issue to everyone's attention,” he added.
Md Nizamul Haque, a retired judge of the High Court and chief law adviser of Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST), said criminal activities, injustice and irregularities in Rohingya camps are at the risk of rising, and stressed on the need of improving law and order situation at Rohingya camps.
Prof Amena Mohsin of Dhaka University said, “Myanmar in their first constitution gave citizenship to Rohingyas but they brought changes later. This will have to be documented in research and writing.”