POST TIME: 7 February, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Rohingya crisis solution lies with Myanmar

Rohingya crisis solution lies with Myanmar

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, after meeting the visiting president of the Swiss Confederation, has said that the root of the Rohingya crisis along with the solution lies in Myanmar. We concur with the PM’s view. She also asked the Swiss president, on a four-day visit to Bangladesh with pledges of an additional twelve million Swiss Francs worth of aid for the Rohingya, to create pressure on Myanmar to find a practical and lasting solution to the ongoing imbroglio.

The Swiss government had earlier promised eight million Swiss Francs in October, 2017. The visiting Swiss president will go to the Kutupalong Rohingya Camp, interact with the displaced people, which will put the plight of the persecuted ethnic minority in the news back in Switzerland. Such visits by high dignitaries from developing partner countries are significant because unless the general masses in European countries fully grasp the enormity of the issue, mobilszing global support for the Rohingya people will be impossible.

With images of mass graves in Rakhine coming to light, the world is slowly forming an idea about the extent of the horrors that were unleashed on the Rohingya. Sadly, with most developed nations and the UN resorting to verbal warnings only, Myanmar has adopted a brazenly cavalier approach, unwilling to allow proper assessment of the socio-political condition in Rakhine State. When the details of Rakhine are sketchy, expecting a smooth repatriation will be illusory. Most developed nations who have been Bangladesh’s development partner for decades continue to state that any return to Rakhine has to be voluntary.

We also feel that no person should be coerced to go back to a place where they faced savagery, though to make Rakhine a safe place once more, Myanmar has to be forced to open up, allow investigative teams into the affected areas and admit to carrying out violations of human rights. Despite the agreement between Myanmar and Bangladesh, the process of return is now caught in an impasse and this is because the former is continuously resorting to prevarication and obfuscation.

The issue wades into uncertain territory with the Western nations along with regional powerhouse India refraining from creating any noticeable pressure on Myanmar. It’s utterly disquieting to see that despite the passing of more than six months, no country has directly slated the civilian façade of Burma’s leadership. The crisis originated in Myanmar and it will be solved when the country discards obscurantism with the developed nations resorting to some strong actions and not merely platitudes.