Myanmar reneging on its promise
While briefing foreign diplomats in Dhaka on Tuesday, the foreign minister lamented the mendacious position of Myanmar regarding the Rohingya issue, particularly its position on the repatriation of Rohingyas. Anybody who was perspicuous about, and followed, the events in Rakhine, particularly over the last decade and a half, would have concluded that Myanmar's intention of signing the repatriation deal was to use it as a ploy, not only to delay but also defeat any attempt to repatriate the refugees. The fact is, Myanmar had never wanted to stand by its commitment.
Myanmar blaming Bangladesh for the delay in repatriation is really like a thief calling "stop thief"! And unfortunately, most of its neighbours, particularly those with both economic and diplomatic clout, were either gullible enough and believed what Myanmar was dishing out to the world, or chose to disregard the reality and preferred to be a part in spreading tendentious narratives or validating an act of genocide through their own statements on the issue, allowing economic and business interests to triumph over humanitarian considerations.
Myanmar has forced the Rohingyas out of their own country with a particular purpose. All the gestures and actions emanating from Naypyidaw are merely a façade intended to provide a patina of honest intent on their otherwise nefarious design. If they had really wanted to take back the Rohingyas, they would not have started another round of atrocities in Rakhine defeating any prospect of normalcy—a sine qua non for repatriation—in that state.
We feel that Bangladesh should base its diplomatic forays on this fact as the basis of formulating its diplomatic policy on the Rohingya issue. While we are happy to note that most of our friends share our position on the issue, we would like to see them go beyond mere expressing mutuality of views and, instead, initiate substantive action to ensure safe return of Rohingyas to their country and safe existence therein with all the benefits that other Myanmar citizens enjoy, not as a gesture of magnanimity but as a matter of their inherent right.