Myanmar to take back Rohingyas if global pressure mounted, says the minister
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen has said Bangladesh will decide its policy towards Afghanistan independently noting that what India or Pakistan is doing is not that much important to Bangladesh.
“Bangladesh always decides its foreign policy in the interest of its own very independently,” he told BBC Bangla in an interview making it clear that the decision of Bangladesh is not linked with that of any other country.
The foreign minister said Bangladesh always believes in a people's government that comes through a political and democratic process, and it always extends support to such a government where people’s desire is reflected.
“We’ll extend support if people’s desire is reflected in the new Afghan government. At this moment, we don’t know as we’re yet to understand the situation in Afghanistan,” Dr Momen said things will depend on how the new Afghan government acts and what policy it adopts after the formulation of the government.
The foreign minister, however, said there is a perception to get about the people in Afghanistan as what they want.
Responding to a question, Dr Momen said there is a commitment from the highest level that no one will be killed along the Bangladesh-India border but unfortunately it is still happening.
He said it is unfortunate for Bangladesh while it is a shame for India as it is happening despite commitment.
“In principle, the two countries decided that no one should be killed and no live bullets will be used. But it’s happening. We don't want a single death. It’s the decision but it’s not fully complied yet,” said the foreign minister.
Asked why the border killing is still happening, Dr Momen suggested the journalist do investigative journalism as they are not getting a clue.
Responding to a question on the Rohingya crisis, the foreign minister said four years have passed away but not a single Rohingya was repatriated. “Myanmar didn’t keep its commitment.”
He said Bangladesh will continue to urge the international community to push Myanmar saying Myanmar will take back Rohingyas if pressure on them is mounted.
Dr Momen mentioned that Myanmar took back its nationals in 1978 and 1992 but this time Bangladesh is yet to be successful.
He said they are trying bilaterally, trilaterally and multilaterally to find a solution to the Rohingya crisis created by Myanmar.
Dr Momen reminded all that there will be pockets of extremism and radicalism if the Rohingyas' stay in Bangladesh is prolonged which will hurt the investment of major countries in the region amid the possibility of instability.
The foreign minister expressed displeasure over the UK government’s decision to keep Bangladesh on the red list for entering England.
“We’ve conveyed our concern,” he said, adding that it should be a shame for Britain as it is not even taking responsibility or ignoring British-Bangladeshis who got stuck in Bangladesh.
If anyone from a red-listed country enters the UK, he or she must book a quarantine hotel (cost 2,500-pound sterling) and coronavirus (Covid-19) tests which is quite expensive.