Myanmar Citizenship: Rohingyas have to go through verification
Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh will get Myanmar citizenship if they go through verification under the national verification card (NVC) scheme.
Mohammad Mizanur Rahman, refugee relief and repatriation commissioner (RRRC), yesterday made the comment after a Myanmar delegation visited refugee camps at Teknaf in Cox's Bazar.
The 14-member Myanmar delegation, led by Aung Myew, regional director of Myanmar's social affairs ministry, visited Bangladesh as part of the initiative that was launched to start Rohingyas' repatriation on a pilot basis.
The delegation talked to 280 Rohingyas. They mainly focused on creating awareness among the refugees about the repatriation process, said RRRC Mizanur.
During the talks, Rohingyas demanded Myanmar citizenships and told the delegation that they wanted to return to their homeland, said Mizanur.
"In response, members of the delegation said Rohingyas would have to apply for national verification card (NVC) to get citizenship," he said.
"Now we will work for the repatriation of Rohingyas who want to return to Myanmar voluntarily," Mizanur said.
Talking to The Daily Star, multiple Rohingyas said the delegation assured them of providing education, medical and other facilities.
"We requested them to prioritise our prime demand of Myanmar citizenship. Besides, we also sought for security after our return," said Bazlul Islam, an inhabitant of camp-26.
Mainul Kabir, head of the Rohingya wing in Bangladesh's foreign ministry, said that repatriation was "the only way to solve the Rohingya issue", reports AFP.
He said the Myanmar delegation "assured that the confusions that are being created will be resolved gradually", AFP added.
The first Myanmar delegation arrived in Bangladesh on March 15 on a five-day visit to scrutinise the list of Rohingyas sent by Bangladesh to their country for repatriation.
Then a 20-member delegation of Rohingyas and seven Bangladeshi officials visited Rakhine state on May 5 to see the arrangements made by the Myanmar authorities for a planned repatriation.
This is the second delegation of Myanmar visiting Cox's Bazar to accelerate the Rohingya repatriation.
Around 1.2 million Rohingyas have been living in Bangladesh. Most of them fled a violent military crackdown in their homeland in 2017 and joined others who had fled to Bangladesh since the 1980s.
Since the biggest influx in 2017, Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a bilateral deal for repatriation. But two repatriation attempts have failed so far.