Rakhine population vulnerable to radicalisation: FM

21 Dec,2016


Dhaka, BdChronicle:

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali has said the vulnerabilities and unaddressed grievances of the deeply frustrated Rakhine population could be exploited by transnational networks for spreading radicalisation.

Bangladesh is ready to cooperate with Myanmar to address this threat, he said.

The issue came up for discussion when  Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi was here in Dhaka who concluded her Bangladesh visit after meeting Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday  evening.

The ministers also discussed the scope of cooperation in combating human trafficking, according to the Foreign Ministry here.

The Indonesian Foreign Minister attended a joined briefing by UNHCR and IOM during her stay in Dhaka.

Then she, accompanied by Mahmood Ali, went to Ukhia, Cox's Bazar by a helicopter to visit the Kutupalong Refugee Camp and surrounding makeshift camps there.

There, the visiting minister met the registered refugees waiting long for repatriation as well as undocumented Myanmar nationals, particularly newly arrived Myanmar nationals from Rakhine State, and listen to their stories.

They also had a bird's eye view of the Naaf River and adjacent areas from the air to have a better understanding of the nature of the issue.

This was the first visit of the Indonesian Foreign Minister Marsudi to Bangladesh.

The two Foreign Ministers discussed ways and means to further strengthen bilateral cooperation.

They exchanged views on pertinent regional issues, particularly the evolving humanitarian crisis in the Rakhine State of Myanmar and resulting influx of Muslim population from the Rakhine State seeking shelter into Bangladesh.

Foreign Minister Ali stressed the need for addressing the root cause of the protracted problem by ensuring basic rights of the people.

He assured the Indonesian Foreign Minister that following her ‘Zero Tolerance’ policy, Bangladesh does not allow her territory to be used by terrorists against the neighbours.

He also expressed Bangladesh's willingness to continue to cooperate closely with Myanmar in the security domain, apart from the evolving groupings known as BCIM-EC and BIMSTEC.

The two foreign ministers discussed the threat of radicalisation in the region and emphasised effective cooperation among the regional countries to face the challenge.

State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Md Shahriar Alam, MP, Foreign Secretary Md. Shahidul Haque, Representative of UNHCR in Bangladesh Shinji Kubo, IOM Chief of Mission Sarat Dash, accompanied the two foreign ministers during the visit.

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