Bangladesh under pressure not to relocate Rohingyas to Bhasan Char: FM
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has said international NGOs, including UNHCR, are creating pressure against the Bhasan Char relocation programme even though some Rohingyas were willing to go there.
"But there's a pressure on us. UNHCR and other INGOs want to go for examination before relocation [of Rohingyas to Bhasan Char]," he told reporters on Sunday, reports UNB.
Momen said Bhasan Char was a very beautiful place and it should have been a resort. "It would be a wonderful resort; such a beautiful place. I would have made it a resort had I been in charge of it."
The foreign minister said the government has decided to relocate 100,000 Rohingyas to Bhasan Char to avoid the risk of deaths due to landslides in Cox's Bazar Rohingya camps.
Meanwhile, facilities were developed there so that Rohingyas can engage in economic activities similar to what they used to do in Myanmar.
He said many of the Rohingyas were willing to go there.
Responding to a question, Momen said the government wants to gradually relocate Rohingyas there.
European Union (EU) Ambassador to Bangladesh Rensje Teerink recently sought visits by UN technical and humanitarian protection teams to Bhasan Char though Rohingya leaders recently expressed satisfaction over the situation there.
"While the first recent "go-and-see" visit was a welcome step, it would also be important that the proposed UN technical and protection assessments are also able to proceed, as well as the separate humanitarian and protection visits to assess the situation for the 306 refugees already relocated there," she said.