Dhaka disburses $500,000 to OIC over Rohingya genocide case
Bangladesh has disbursed US$ 500,000 to OIC as foreign ministers of the 57-nation group in their ongoing meeting initiated a fund raising campaign for its West African member Gambia's legal battle against Myanmar over Rohingya genocide in International Court of Justice (ICJ).
"We have already disbursed the fund to the OIC for supporting Gambia in
its legal battle," said Bangladesh's Permanent Representative to Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Dr Mohammad Javed Patwary, who also serves as the ambassador to Saudi Arabia.
Patwary, who leads Dhaka at OIC's Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) in Niger, told BSS that the OIC General Secretariat by now opened a dedicated account for Gambia's battle at ICJ while the West African nation also signaled urgent need for the fund.
"I call for urgent, voluntary and substantial contribution of the (OIC) member states for the legal case," Gambia's Justice Minister Dawda A Jallow while presenting latest update of the Rohingya case at the CFM, where the crisis appeared to be the key agenda.
He said Gambia needed approximately US$ 5 million to pay particularly the lawyers to run the case while it by now hired a reputed US-based law firm to stand by the prosecution side in the case.
But Jallow said "unfortunately" the law firm was yet to receive any significant payment for the legal services it rendered since September 2019 as "it is only this month that a sum of US$ 300,000 was paid to the law firm, which is less than 10 percent of the amount owed them".
The Gambian minister said the case was aimed to seek a conclusive and lasting solution to the Rohingya crisis and cautioned that all potential OIC interventions to ICJ regarding Rohingya cause should be conducted in coordination with his country for the sake of the cause.
He warned that any uncoordinated OIC intervention could affect the case and "seriously complicate matters".
OIC General Secretariat officials said apart from Bangladesh, out of the 57 members Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Nigeria by now provided financial support to Gambia over the ICJ case involving Myanmar's Muslim minority Rohingyas, over a million of whom were forced to take refuge in Bangladesh to evade genocide.
Foreign minister Dr AK Abdul Momen was scheduled to lead the Bangladesh delegation to OIC's two-day crucial 47th CFM session that began on Friday but Covid-19 detection at the last minute forced him to scrap his scheduled Niger visit. -BSS