DHAKA, Oct 15, 2020 (BSS) – Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today put emphasis on immediate repatriation of the Rohingyas in their homeland and reiterated her call to the international community, including the United States, to help in their rehabilitation process.
“We want immediate repatriation of the Rohingyas and the world community, including the United States, should help rehabilitate them in their homeland of Myanmar,” she said.
The prime minister made the appeal when US Deputy Secretary of State Stephen E. Beigun paid a courtesy call on her at her official Ganabhaban residence here this afternoon.
After the meeting, PM’s Press Secretray Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters.
In this connection, Stephen E. Beigun said the United States wants permanent solution to the protracted Rohingya crisis. “We’ll continue to extend our support to Bangladesh on this issue,” he said.
The prime minister mentioned that there are over 1.1 million forcibly displaced Rohingya people in Bangladesh.
“It’s an extra burden for us. The problem has been created by Myanmar and we’re holding dialogues with them … they should take back their citizens,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said the Rohingya issue is a social problem, and a huge number of the displaced Myanmar nationals are living in camps in Cox’s Bazar.
“Some quarters could mislead them to be involved in anti-social activities. So, we need their immediate repatriation to their homeland,” she said.
The prime minister and the US deputy secretary of state discussed the issue of bringing back Bangabandhu’s convicted fugitive killer Rashed Chowdhury who is now hiding in the USA.
Stephen E. Beigun in this regard informed that the case is being reviewed by the US attorney general office.
He said the visa services for Bangladeshi students will be reopened after the easing of COVID-19 situation.
The US deputy secretary of state, who arrived in Bangladesh on Wednesday, said he has already discussed the issue of economic cooperation with Bangladesh officials.
“The US government will closely work with Bangladesh for promoting economic and trade relations,” he said.
He discussed with the premier coronavirus situation in the USA, saying that over two lakh people died there after being infected with the deadly virus.
“We’re close to making the vaccines available and hope that the vaccines will be available in the markets in the next two weeks,” he said.
He said several US companies are manufacturing the vaccines, while widespread vaccination will start from next year.
The US deputy secretary state highly appreciated Bangladesh’s tremendous economic stability and progress under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
He said the Bangladesh is attracting foreign investment in huge volume, mentioning that the United States wants to further strengthen the cooperation with Bangladesh in the energy sector.
The prime minister said her government is setting up 100 special economic zones across the country to attract more investment from home and abroad as well as generate employment.
Sheikh Hasina also briefly highlighted her government’s steps to contain the COVID-19 alongside keeping the wheels of the country’s economy vibrant amid the pandemic.
US Ambassador in Dhaka Earl R. Miller and PM’s Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus were present during the meeting.