The visiting delegation of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Wednesday met Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali and State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam, and discussed the Rohingya issue, especially their safe return to Myanmar.
The 13-member delegation reiterated OIC’s position and assured Dhaka of continuing its pressure on Myanmar to take back their nationals in a dignified manner, sources at the Foreign Ministry said.
Secretary (Bilateral & Consular) Kamrul Ahsan and Foreign Ministry senior officials were present.
The delegation members appreciated Bangladesh and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for giving shelter to the forcibly displaced Rohingyas.
The team goes to Cox’s Bazar on Thursday to get firsthand information on the state of human rights violations faced by the Rohingyas in Myanmar to prepare a report.
During the visit, the officials from the OIC General Secretariat will also discuss the humanitarian needs and other issues of concern with the relevant authorities in Bangladesh.
Later, they will submit the report to OIC Secretary General Dr Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen.
A detailed report, both on the human rights situation of the Rohingyas in Myanmar and their urgent humanitarian needs, will be presented to the upcoming OIC Council of Foreign Ministers scheduled to take place in May this year in Dhaka.
The delegation consists of members of the OIC Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC), one of the principle statutory organs of the OIC, and officials from relevant departments of the OIC General Secretariat, including the minorities, Information and Humanitarian Affairs.
The visit is undertaken, in coordination with the government of Bangladesh, to ascertain the human rights and humanitarian situation of the Rohingyas in Myanmar, according to an OIC statement.
The delegation will leave here on Saturday concluding its visit.
Despite repeated requests by the IPHRC, the Myanmar authorities did not allow to undertake a fact-finding visit on the human rights situation faced by the Rohingyas in Rakhine State.
In the absence of a positive response from the Myanmar government, the IPHRC has decided to visit Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar, the statement says.
The IPHRC has routinely pronounced its strong concerns and condemnation on the state of human rights violations faced by the Rohingyas in Myanmar at all relevant UN forums.
The OIC has repeatedly called upon the Myanmar government that Rohingyas must be allowed to return in safety and dignity to their original places of residence, and that the authorities must take concrete steps to address the root causes of tensions in Rakhine.