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FMs of China, Germany, Japan, Sweden due in late Nov
Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali on Wednesday said he is willing to stay back in Myanmar’s capital Nay Pyi Taw on November 22-23 following the ASEM Foreign Ministers’ meeting for negotiation and finalisation of a bilateral ‘arrangement’ on repatriation of the Rohingyas who crossed into Bangladesh amid persecution in their homeland.
Mahmood Ali said he cannot visit Nay Pyi Taw on November 16-17 as desired by Myanmar ahead of the ASEM Foreign Ministers’ meeting scheduled for November 20-21 since the Foreign Ministers of China, Japan, Germany and Sweden are coming to Bangladesh at that time.
The Foreign Minister had a meeting with Indian High Commissioner Harsh Vardhan Shringla, Chinese Ambassadors Ma Mingqiang, Thai Ambassador to Dhaka Panpimon Suwannapongse and the New Delhi based Ambassador of Lao PDR to Bangladesh on Wednesday at the state guesthouse Padma and conveyed them about his plan.
Diplomatic sources said the foreign ministers want to get a better understanding about the current Rohingya situation through discussions with Bangladesh top officials ahead of the ASEM foreign ministers’ meeting where Rohingya issue will dominate.
Earlier, the European Union said they intend to seize the opportunity at the ASEM meeting to engage, in the margins thereof, in a constructive dialogue with the Myanmar government and will also continue to liaise with all Asian partners on the current issues.
The EU also encouraged its partners in Asean and the region to engage in this process.
The Foreign Minister discussed with the envoys of the countries having borders with Myanmar about the ongoing situation of Rohingya refugees who have fled their homeland and taken shelter in Bangladesh, exchanged views with them, and updated them on Bangladesh’s efforts and engagement with international community in resolving the crisis.
He also discussed with them about the Presidential Statement of the UN Security Council issued on November 5 and sought cooperation and support of their countries for a sustainable solution of the crisis.
The Foreign Minister touched upon the status of ongoing bilateral discussion with Myanmar on repatriation of the forcibly displaced Rohingyas.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs M Shahriar Alam and senior officials of the Foreign Ministry were present at the meeting.
An ASEM Senior Officials' Meeting (ASEM SOM) in preparation for the 13th ASEM Foreign Ministers' Meeting (ASEM FMM13) will be held on November 17-19 in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar.
Myanmar is the host of ASEM FMM13 on November 20-21.
The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) is an intergovernmental forum for dialogue and cooperation which fosters political dialogue, reinforces economic cooperation, and promotes collaboration in other areas of mutual interest.