POST TIME: 12 July, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Turkey to host a Rohingya family
Deepak Acharjee

Turkey to host a Rohingya family

The Turkish government has proposed to host a six-member family of Rohingya refugees for medical treatment in Ankara, according to sources in the foreign affairs ministry.

The Turkish embassy in Dhaka on behalf of the Turkish government has recently given the proposal in writing to the foreign affairs ministry, the sources added. The foreign affairs ministry has forwarded the letter to the Security Service Division of the home ministry, requesting it to take a decision on the matter. However, the Security Service Division is yet to decide on the matter till the filing of this report.

In the letter (2018/40529894-Dakka BE/14021538-URGENT), issued on June 21, the Turkish embassy says: “As discussed between the officials of the embassy and the esteemed ministry on 12 June 2018, the Turkish government kindly proposes to host Md Ayub, his sick mother Asiya Khatun, his missing brother’s wife Rahima Khatun, his missing brother’s children Faysel, Mojalafa and Sabekurnahar in Turkey for medical treatment.”

“The embassy avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the  foreign affairs ministry the assurances of its highest consideration,” it adds. In its letter, the Turkish embassy has also included the Myanmar nationals’ registration cards to ensure their identities as Myanmar citizen.

When contacted, a senior official of the Security Service Division of the home ministry has told The Independent that they are now looking into the Turkish embassy’s proposal of hosting the Rohingya family. “We don’t understand why the Turkish embassy would like to host only one Rohingya family!” he said.

At present, over 11 lakh Rohingyas are staying in different camps in Cox’s Bazar after fleeing from Rakhaine state of Myanmar following a military crackdown in August 25 last year. After coming to Bangladesh, Turkish prime minister Binali Yildirim and Turkish first lady Emine Erdogan visited a Rohingya camp in Cox’s Bazar. They affirmed that the Turkish government would stand by the Rohingyas who have fled the ethnic cleansing in Myanmar.

On September 20, 2017, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina held a meeting with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan in New York on the sidelines of United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and discussed the Rohingya issue. Erdogan has been especially vocal against the latest spell of violence targeting the Rohingya Muslim minority in Myanmar.

Erdogan said that Turkey would raise the issue at the UNGA. He had also discussed the Rohingya issue with around 20 world leaders.

His wife, Emine Erdogan, had flown to Bangladesh to meet the Rohingyas and see the situation for herself on September 7 last year.

So far, Turkey has sent 55 tonnes of relief for the Rohingyas.