This is what happens when words are not backed by actions.
By showing leniency towards Myanmar over the Rohingya crisis, time and again, the world has slowly allowed them to get away with ethnic cleansing on such a scale.
Myanmar’s latest act of aggression towards the Rohingya is not only in direct violation of the repatriation agreement Bangladesh has signed with them, but is also a direct insult to both our country and the spirit of the agreement that we have been working towards all this time.
Attempting to forcefully repatriate the Rohingya who have been residing in the no man’s land between Bangladesh and Myanmar is as transparent as it gets in displaying Myanmar’s attitude regarding the repatriation deal, which decrees that any and all repatriation is to be voluntary on the part of the Rohingya.
Even more worrying are the connotations of the threats towards the Rohingya if they refuse to be repatriated -- land mines being placed along the border, gun shots being fired into the air, helicopters flying around the Rohingya pointing guns at them.
Myanmar’s intentions are clear, and they are not good.
Despite all deliberation over the repatriation deal, it is now clear that Myanmar’s negotiations are not placed in good faith.
The military regime evidently does not intend to honour any aspect of the repatriation deal, their contempt for which is apparent. Indeed, what conclusion can we draw from their actions other than that their contempt extends to Bangladesh, as well?
There is no mistaking the fact that trying to forcefully remove the Rohingya from the no man’s land is an escalation of Myanmar’s attitude towards both the Rohingya and Bangladesh. Myanmar has no claims over that area, and we should not allow them to continue in their present course of action.
This is an act of aggression, not just against the Rohingya, but against Bangladesh, as well, and should be understood as such.