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Cooperating for peace

  • Published at 11:54 pm May 31st, 2019

It is imperative that regional powers establish goodwill and work with each other

For a country like Bangladesh, giving shelter to more than a million refugees was a challenge like no other -- from resource management to allocating space to cultural conflicts, it has tested the resilience and generosity of the Bangladeshi people.

But, thanks to a government that has consistently chosen humanity over all else, we have provided more than a million Rohingya refugees aid, safety, and education.

However, the issue is far from resolved, as these displaced people need to go back to a homeland where they feel welcome, and their rights are fully restored.

In this regard, we could not help but agree with the prime minister in her recent keynote speech at a Nikkei Inc International Conference in Tokyo: Dialogue remains key.

In fact, for a continent as diverse as Asia, full of emerging nations making their mark on the world stage, it is imperative that regional powers establish goodwill and work with each other to create win-win situations.

Unfortunately, in this regard, Myanmar has been far from cooperative, defending the crimes against humanity carried out by their armed forces against the Rohingya population in Rakhine.

But the rest of the region must show the right way forward. Through increasing cooperation amongst neighbours, Asia can become not only an economic powerhouse, but also stand as a vanguard of core moral values which show the rest of the world the path forward.

In many ways, Bangladesh has been playing this role ever since the Rohingya exodus in August of 2017, showing the extent to which the most struggling of nations can lend a hand to the downtrodden, needy, and persecuted.

In the future, we hope that Bangladesh can do even more than what it has done so far, and show the world what it is capable of.