UN chief disappointed at lack of progress in Myanmar’s refugee crisis

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United Nations, Jan 19 (IANS) UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has expressed frustration over the lack of progress in Myanmar’s refugee crisis.

“I feel enormous frustration with the lack of progress in relation to Myanmar and with the suffering of the people, in particular… people living in Bangladesh in extremely difficult circumstances,” Guterres told reporters on Friday, Xinhua news agency reported.

“We insist in the need to create conditions for them to be willing to go back.”

It is absolutely essential to create the conditions of confidence and trust. It’s not only physical reconstruction; it’s a matter of reconciliation of communities and strong commitment by the government for that reconciliation of communities to be possible and for the safety of the Rohingya population to be guaranteed, he said.

“Unfortunately, the truth is that the situation on the ground has not been conducive to it. Things have been too slow.”

One of the first steps is to solve the problem of the internally displaced, he said. Finding adequate solutions for the internally displaced would be a very good way to give credibility to the perspective of a future return of refugees.

A crackdown by Myanmar’s security forces, launched in response to attacks by Rohingya militants in August 2017, has pushed at least 700,000 Rohingya people from Myanmar’s Rakhine state across the border into Bangladesh.

–IANS

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