Rohingya repatriation project: Bangladesh urges int’l community to support


Staff Reporter  :
The Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations called for support from the international community to assist in implementing Rohingya pilot repatriation project.

“We urge the United Nations, ASEAN and regional countries to support the pilot repatriation project and help the Rohingya returnees reintegrate in Myanmar,” said the Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations in New York Ambassador Muhammad Abdul Muhith on Friday.

The Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations urged international support for the Rohingya repatriation project while speaking at the United Nations Security Council arria formula meeting on Myanmar, which was convened by the United Kingdom at the United Nations Headquarters.

Referring to the recent dialogue between Bangladesh and Myanmar, Ambassador Muhith informed the Security Council that the two sides have decided to undertake a pilot repatriation project under which a group of verified Myanmar nationals will return to Myanmar in the first batch.

The repatriation will continue and additional Rohingyas will be repatriated in successive batches. He further informed that a group of 20 Rohingya visited Rakhine State on 5 May to see arrangements made in Myanmar for their return.

Citing the pilot project as an important step in the right direction, Permanent Representative said that Bangladesh is taking all measures to ensure the voluntary return of the Rohingyas in family units.

Ambassador Muhith called upon the international community to remain vigilant so that the returnees under pilot project are not exposed to further persecution.

“The presence of humanitarian and development actors in the Rakhine will act as an important confidence building measure. We also urge the regional countries to support the returnees and help them reintegrate in Myanmar society,” he added.


The meeting held in in-person format was participated by all Security Council members and a large number of member States from the ASEAN.

The Council members discussed the current humanitarian challenges in Myanmar including in the aftermath of Cyclone Mocha.

They also expressed support for the efforts of ASEAN in addressing the multifaceted challenges of Myanmar.

On the Rohingya issue, the majority of the members expressed support for the safe, voluntary, sustainable and dignified return of the Rohingyas to their homeland in Myanmar, while calling upon Myanmar to improve the condition in Rakhine.

Ambassador Muhith sought international community’s support in implementing the Rohingya pilot repatriation project
Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch on Thursday urged the donor governments and the United Nation experts to halt any Rohingya repatriation until conditions are in place for safe and sustainable returns.

It stated that the Rohingya repatriation organised by Bangladesh and Myanmar without consulting the community or addressing the grave risks to their lives and liberty would push the returnees to face junta’s crimes of apartheid and persecution.

“Bangladesh should continue to uphold its policy of not forcing Rohingya refugees to return to Myanmar under current conditions,” said Shayna Bauchner, Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch.