United Nations pushes Myanmar to step up return of Rohingya


Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has underlined the need for "safe, speedy and sustainable return" of the Rohingyas to Myanmar from Bangladesh.

United Nations, May 10 The UN Security Council has urged Myanmar to create "conducive" conditions to ensure safe and dignified return of Rohingya Muslim refugees and hold accountable perpetrators of violence, including sexual abuse against children.

The visit is part of the ongoing high-level interaction between the governments of India and Myanmar.

The Minister informed Myanmar that India was on track to complete a project to set up prefabricated housing for the Rohingya population returning from their present camps in Bangladesh. She had called on Myanmar president U. Win Myint and state counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi.

India does not use the phrase Rohingya in official documents, parleying to Myanmar's sensitivity over this term.

She also reiterated India's readiness and commitment to helping the government of Myanmar in addressing issues related to the Rakhine State.

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Rohingya so-called attacks on security posts in Rakhine in August a year ago sparked a military operation that has sent almost 700,000 Rohingya fleeing to refugee camps in Cox´s Bazar in Bangladesh.

In the past, India has said that the long-term solution to the problems plaguing Rakhine province would be "rapid socio-economic and infrastructure development that would help all communities living in the State".

Ms. Swaraj welcomed the Myanmar government's commitment to implementing the Rakhine Advisory Commission's recommendations.

Bangladesh, in recent months, has repeatedly urged India to intervene and pressure Myanmar to take back its citizens who are living in hard circumstances on Bangladeshi territory.

The Council called on Myanmar's government to conclude an agreement "in the coming days" with the United Nations refugee agency on repatriating refugees from Bangladesh and creating conditions for their "safe, voluntary and dignified return" to their homes in Rakhine.

The two countries also signed seven agreements, including one that will enable people from both sides to cross the land border with passport and visa, including for accessing health and education services, pilgrimage and tourism.