Rohingya repatriation halted: Officials

Rohingya repatriation halted: Officials

UNB . Cox’s Bazar |  Nov 15, 2018   Prothom Alo

Rohingyas shout slogans at a protest against a disputed repatriation programme at the Unchiprang refugee camp near Teknaf on 15 November, 2018. Photo: AFPDespite all the preparations from the Bangladesh side, the scheduled Rohingya repatriation did not take place on Thursday as Rohingyas are not willing to go back.

“The Rohingya repatriation has been halted as they don’t want to go back to Mayanmar,” said Mohammad Abul Kalam, Refugee, Relief and Repatriation commissioner under the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief, while talking to newsmen at Ukhia Kutupalong camp on Thursday.

“We gave them a time from 2:00pm to 4:00pm to take decision and wait there, but no one agreed to go back. The process will resume when the Rohingya people will agree,” said Kalam, a government spokesperson.

Rohingyas in different camps staged demonstrations expressing their unwillingness to return to their homeland though Bangladesh and Myanmar have completed all the necessary preparations to repatriate 150 of them on Thursday afternoon.

Earlier, Bangladesh and Myanmar agreed to begin the first batch of repatriation on 15 November with 150 individuals each day until 30 November, and a list of 2,260 Rohingyas, including 450 Hindus of 485 families, has been handed over to the Myanmar side.