Monday, 25 May 2020

Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh:  On August 24, Ms. Ellen R. Sauerbrey, Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration of the United States, has proposed to the government of Bangladesh for permanent settlement of official and un-official refugees in Bangladesh.

She has proposed to Md. Aminul Islam, Deputy Commissioner (DC) of Cox's Bazar on 23rd August in the morning at the DC’s office. The DC of Cox's Bazar has already denied for the permanent settlement of Rohingyas in Cox's Bazar. The DC told Ms. Ellen that being   poor and over populated; Bangladesh is not capable to permanent settlement of Rohingyas in Cox's Bazar and other places in Bangladesh. Ms. Ellen made the proposal to the DC of Cox's Bazar at his officer room when she made a courtesy visit to the DC, according to officials report.
 Ms. Petreseya Butanes, US Ambassador in Bangladesh, senior officials of UNHCR and United States State Department were also present at that time. Meanwhile, Ms. Ellen and her colleagues also met Sohibur Rahman, Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commissioner (RRRC), Cox's Bazar in his office in the morning. RRRC officer told the visiting US Assistant Secretary that a total of 21,800 Rohingya refugees are living at Kutupalong of Ukhiya and Nayapara camp under Teknaf police station from 1991-92. Of them, the total of 8,000 refugees has been cleared by the Burma authority for return to their homeland. Later, Ms. Ellen met some pressmen of Cox's Bazar. Ms. Ellen told journalists, Rohingyas are insecure in their country in Burma. Burma military government compels Rohingyas for work at low wages. They have no freedom in their country. So they are not interested to return. She also said, only Rohingyas are not crossing the border more than 2 lakh Burma citizens are living in Thailand and Malaysia, said our correspondent from Cox’s Bazar. Rohingyas are living in pitiable conditions without food, drinking water and other living supports. Bangladesh government helped them as human concern. Bangladesh is a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council. So Bangladesh government is playing its role for refugees. Bangladesh singed in 1951-refuge convention. So, refugee's repatriation must be voluntarily. Moreover, she told journalists that Bangladesh government did not violate the refugee convention. Bangladesh government has been providing food, sanitation, drinking water and other living supports with the help of the UNHCR and other non-government organizations. Jassica H. Adler, Deputy Refugee Coordinator for Southeast Asia, American Embassy, Refugee & Migration Affairs, Thailand and Eileen Kelley, Programme Officer, Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, US Department of State, were present, among others, with her. Earlier, Ms. Ellen visited Domdomiha makeshift camp of Teknaf police station on August 22. At least, 12,000 Rohingyas were living at Domdomiha on the bank of the river Naf during last two years. Those Rohingyas are not enlisted refugees. So they are suffering for want of food, drinking water, sanitation and other living supports. She also visited non-government organization MSF Holland office and saw medical services for Rohingyas. Some Rohingyas children were under treatment at that camp when she was visiting the camp.