Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh
Rohingya refugee camps in BangladeshReuters file photo

Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen on Sunday said Dhaka is happy with the result of United Nations (UN) resolution on Rohingyas and Bangladesh sees it as its diplomatic success.

“We’re happy with the results,” he told newspersons at his office terming it as a success for Bangladesh as 132 countries voted in favour of the resolution.

China, Russia, Belarus, Cambodia, Laos, the Philippines, Vietnam and Zimbabwe stood beside Myanmar while India and Japan refrained from voting the draft resolution on the situation of human rights of Rohingya Muslims and other minorities in Myanmar which was adopted by the UN General Assembly.

The foreign minister said Dhaka has no displeasure against the countries which abstained from voting in the UN resolution as well as voted against it saying it is a “strategic” decision.

A total of 26 countries, including India, Japan, Sri Lanka and Singapore abstained from voting on the resolution on the situation of human rights of Rohingya Muslims and other minorities in Myanmar

“Those countries could play a better role which voted against the resolution. We don’t have any displeasure against them,” he said.

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The resolution was placed before the 75th General Assembly of the United Nations on Thursday.

A total of 26 countries, including India, Japan, Sri Lanka and Singapore abstained from voting on the resolution on the situation of human rights of Rohingya Muslims and other minorities in Myanmar.

Momen said the countries that wanted to remain neutral in the UN to use their leverage on Myanmar in finding the solution, talked to Bangladesh before taking their decision. “We are happy about that.”

The foreign minister further said Rohingya issue remains a big challenge and expressed his expectation over resumption of the repatriation process in this year.

“I’ve conveyed to my counterpart in Myanmar that we want the (repatriation) process to start,” he said.

Saying that a conducive environment for voluntary repatriation has to be in place as promised, Momen said Bangladesh expects that Myanmar will keep its word in the New Year.

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Bangladesh is hosting over 1.1 million forcefully displaced Rohingyas in Cox’s Bazar district and most of them arrived there since 25 August 2017 after a military crackdown by Myanmar, which the UN called a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing” and “genocide” by other rights groups.

Bangladesh and Myanmar signed the repatriation deal on 23 November 2017. On 16 January 2018, Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a document on “Physical Arrangement”, which was supposed to facilitate the return of Rohingyas to their homeland.

Myanmar did not take back a single Rohingya from Bangladesh over the last three years while the attempts of repatriation failed twice.