Doing everything except war to bring back Rohingyas: Foreign Minister
Dhaka, 9 July 2023: Foreign Minister Dr. AK Abdul Momen said, "We are doing everything except war to send the Rohingyas back."
All options are open. We believe we can solve the problem through discussion. Trying to take up a pilot project. Many are blocking it. Rohingyas will be able to go to their homes when the project starts.
He said this in response to a question at a discussion meeting organized by Diplomatic Correspondents Association Bangladesh (DCAB), an organization of diplomatic journalists at the Foreign Service Academy on Bailey Road in the capital on Saturday.
Bangladesh will become a member of the regional economic alliance BRICS if requested, the foreign minister said, if requested, we will have no objection. We want to open another window. In the meantime we are joining the Bank of BRICS. We need a lot of resources, investment. In that case this could be another option. So if they invite, we will join.
We saw dialogue on elections in 2014 mediated by UN Assistant Secretary General Oscar Fernandez Taranco. There were three rounds of dialogue. Now, will there be a dialogue through our own mediation, or are we waiting for a third party? To such a question, he said, "I don't know that any progress has been made in the dialogue."
Party secretary can talk about these issues. I don't think we have achieved much through dialogue before.
When asked how he sees Russia's counter-statements with the West regarding Bangladesh, AK Abdul Momen said, "This is their statement. We have nothing to say about this.
In a question about the resignation of the government before the election, the minister said, "Does the president resign before the election in the United States?" Before the election in England, the prime minister stood down? What supervisory system is there anywhere in the world? It was probably in Pakistan for a while. These are futile discussions. We will organize fair and transparent elections according to our constitution and laws.
Failed to reach an honorable solution with Myanmar over Rohingya. Asked whether this is our failure, he said, "We sheltered 11 lakh Rohingyas at a time when they were oppressed." Considering the humanitarian aspects, we have given them shelter. And Myanmar has a habit of expelling people before, in the seventies, eighties and nineties. There are about 125 ethnic groups in Myanmar. Myanmar does not recognize the Rohingya as its own. Since 1964 their misfortune has started. Before this, he was also a member of Myanmar's cabinet.