• Saturday, Jul 24, 2021
  • Last Update : 01:20 pm

ED: Four years of inaction

  • Published at 12:06 pm June 14th, 2021
Rohingya
Noor Banu, 32, adjusts her scarf next to the remains of her burnt makeshift shelter after a fire broke out earlier this week and destroyed thousands of shelters at the Balukhali refugee camp in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, on Thursday, March 25, 2021 Reuters

It is nothing short of unacceptable to remain silent

To call the ongoing Rohingya crisis anything short of a travesty would be an understatement.

It is indeed telling that, over the last four years, ever since more than 700,000 Rohingya escaped persecution in Myanmar to arrive on Bangladesh’s doorstep, not a single amongst them have been repatriated successfully due to what officials have described as an “absence of conducive environment.”

This is no doubt true – in order for us to ensure that the Rohingya go back to Rakhine State voluntarily, the world must believe that they will go back to a nation that will treat them as equal citizens and provide the respect they deserve as human beings.

Unfortunately, this lack of “conducive environment” is unsurprising from a nation which has constantly denied that there was any sort of persecution in the first place, with the international community doing little to ensure that Myanmar is pushed towards making the right decision.

After all, in an increasingly globalized world, can we truly, as supporters of humanity, justice, and tolerance, sit back and allow the indescribable suffering the Rohingya have gone through at the hands of the Myanmar army?

No, we cannot, and it is nothing short of unacceptable to remain silent as an entire population is ethnically cleansed and denied entry back into their homeland, a place which saw their homes literally burned to the ground.

We hope that the world pays attention as Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen attends two important events at the UNGA and makes the case for resolving the Rohingya crisis quickly.

In order to ensure the rightful repatriation of the Rohingya, first and foremost, Myanmar must own up to the truth, and those responsible for the atrocities committed must be tried for their crimes. This must be followed by a clear plan moving forward, which ends with the Rohingya being back in their homeland as full-fledged citizens of Myanmar.

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