Wednesday, January 24, 2018 | ePaper
OIC leaders must unite
Hasina seeks urgent humanitarian aid, proposes creation of 'safe zones' inside Myanmar, calls for implementation of Kofi Annan Commission's recommendations
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has urged the leaders of Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to unite over the Rohingya crisis.
Expressing Dhaka's readiness to join any initiative to be taken by the forum, the Prime Minister said unity only can help solve the plight of Myanmar's ethnic minority Rohingya Muslims in Bangladesh.Â "It is necessary for the Muslim leaders to unite to solve any crisis," the premier told an OIC Contact Group Meeting on Rohingyas at UNGA Headquarters here Tuesday on the sidelines of the 72nd UN General Assembly.
The Prime Minister also sought "Urgent humanitarian assistance" from the Muslim brotherly countries for the Rohingyas Muslims fleeing their home in the face of "ethnic cleansing".
She said that the Muslim brothers and sisters in Myanmar's Rakhine State were exposed to ethnic cleansing in the face of an ongoing military operation, causing the "largest exodus of Rohingyas of all times".
"It is an unbearable human catastrophe. I myself have visited them and listened to the stories of their grave sufferings, particularly of women and children. I would like you all to come to Bangladesh and hear from them about the atrocities in Myanmar," she said.
She said Myanmar was spearheading a state-sponsored propaganda to dub Rohingyas as 'Bengalis' which must be stopped and the country must recognize them as their nationals. OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef Al Othaimeen also spoke on the occasion, among others, when the Bangladesh premier said "all forms of atrocities against the Rohingya Muslims must be stopped immediately".
Sheikh Hasina said all forcibly displaced Rohingyas must also be allowed to return to their homeland in Myanmar with complete safety, security and dignity.
She proposed creation of 'safe zones' inside Myanmar to protect the innocent civilians, especially women, children and elderly persons and called for implementation of Kofi Annan Commission's recommendations "immediately, unconditionally and entirely".
The premier said that until the arrival of the latest surges of refugees, Bangladesh hosted for three decades another 400,000 of them.