Bangladesh seeks KSA support on Rohingya repatriation

Rohingya camp in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh
File photo

Home minister Asaduzzaman Khan called upon the Saudi Arabian government to be more vocal for the repatriation of the Rohingya community to their homeland in the Rakhine state of Myanmar.

He made the appeal during an event held at the Saudi embassy in Dhaka on Monday noon.

The event was held for an initiative of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre to build a shelter project for the Rohingyas in Bangladesh.

The home minister spoke as the chief guest of the event.

Asaduzzaman Khan praised the continued support of Saudi Arabia towards Bangladesh, saying Saudi foreign minister Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud’s recent visit to Bangladesh would further strengthen the friendship between the countries.

He brought up the Rohingya crisis issue and said Bangladesh’s prime minister opened the borders to give shelter to Rohingyas. But it has turned into a big problem for Bangladesh.

The home minister asked Saudi Arabia to be more vocal on the Rohingya repatriation issue.

When asked if Saudi Arabia would put pressure on Myanmar to solve the Rohingya issue, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Bangladesh Essa Yousef Essa Alduhailan said, Saudi Arabia has been lending political and humanitarian support to Bangladesh from the beginning of the Rohingya crisis. During the recent visit of the Saudi foreign minister, the ambassador requested him for help on Rohingya repatriation and to come up with a permanent solution to the issue. The Saudi foreign minister assured that he would lend all kinds of support to Bangladesh to solve the issue.

The Saudi ambassador said Saudi Arabia would continue giving all kinds of support to Bangladesh to solve this crisis. Saudi Arabia would continue garnering support for the case lodged by Gambia in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to ensure justice for the persecuted Rohingya.

When asked if some Rohingya people are putting Bangladesh in an awkward situation by entering Saudi Arabia with Bangladeshi passports, the Home minister said, “We never even consider giving passports to foreigners. We have no such intentions. We have found a few proofs that such passports have been made. We are noting them down and taking action against them.”

The Saudi ambassador said, since the Rohingya crisis began, the Saudi government has provided Bangladesh with $6 million through the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre. In 2020, 300 houses were constructed to house three thousand Rohingya at the camp 17 and 18 in Cox’s Bazar. Other than that, they have donated 40,000 packets of food to the Rohingya in Cox’s Bazar and another 40,000 to the local community.