Foreign Affairs Minister Dr. A K Abdul Momen on Thursday warned of stern action for instigating Rohingya to stay in Bangladesh. He came up with this statement while briefing journalist on Rohingya repatriation process at the foreign ministry. “Many people are continuously provoking the Rohingyas not to go back their homeland Myanmar. These people are distributing leaflets among the Rohingyas and also writing placards in English language. Stern action will be taken against them,” the foreign minister said.
Replying to a query the Foreign Affairs Minister said, the government is still hopeful about the reparation of Rohingya. “Our efforts to send back the Rohingya will continue,” AK Momen said. It should be mentioned that despite all the preparations, no Rohingya turned up on Thursday to avail of the “voluntary” repatriation offer given to them to go back to their place of origin in Rakhine State of Myanmar prompting the authorities to suspend the repatriation process for the day.
While briefing reporters, Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commissioner Mohammad Abul Kalam said they interviewed the listed Rohingyas over the last couple of days and encouraged them to return to their homeland. But nobody did show up at Ghumdhum transit point on Thursday, he said adding that five buses were kept ready to take the Rohingyas to Myanmar’s Rakhine State, their place of origin.
A total of 235 Rohingya families were supposed to be formally repatriated in the first batch. Rohingyas said they are mainly demanding four things before their repatriation -- citizenship, safety and security after their return, returning their homes and land and seeking justice for the crimes committed against them. Bangladesh is now hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas and most of them entered the country since August 25, 2017. The two countries signed a repatriation deal on November 23, 2017, but there has been little progress.