Rohingya repatriation plan shelved

November 19, 2018

TEHRAN - The plan to expatriate Rohingya refugees from the crowded camps in Cox’s Bazar has been temporarily abandoned with Bangladesh now set to go to the polls on December 30, according to reports.

The repatriation and relocation program for Rohingya is likely to be revisited after year-end general elections in Bangladesh, a top Bangladeshi official was quoting saying in the media.
Abul Kalam, Commissioner of the Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commission (RRRC), was quoted saying by Reuters that a new course of action needed to be adopted on repatriation that took into account refugees' key demands.

More than 900,000 Rohingya refugees are currently living in Bangladesh under impoverished conditions after being thrown out of their country following a brutal military crackdown in August 2017.

On October 30, Bangladesh and Myanmar agreed to begin the repatriation process in mid-November but the UN refugee agency said conditions in Rakhine State were “not yet conducive for returns”.

“I urge the governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar to halt these rushed plans for repatriation,” Yanghee Lee, UN special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar, said on Tuesday, calling on Myanmar to grant the Rohingya their right to citizenship, freedom of movement and access to public services.

Lee said Myanmar “failed to provide guarantees they [the Rohingya] would not suffer the same persecution and horrific violence all over again.”

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