The Pulse | Diplomacy | South Asia
Dhaka’s plans for decision of the Rohingya disaster, and its broader relations with Myanmar, stay one thing of a thriller.
Rohingyas in Bangladesh 2015
Credit score: EU/ECHO/Pierre Prakash
Bangladesh has good causes to chorus from taking a place on the February 1 coup in Myanmar, the nation’s international minister advised native media on February 3. It was the final official assertion from Bangladesh after Myanmar following the navy takeover.
After the coup occurred in Myanmar, the Bangladeshi authorities was primarily involved solely with two issues: the way forward for import of 100,000 metric tons of rice, and Rohingya repatriation.
Earlier in first week of February Finance Minister A. H. M. Mustafa Kamal advised the press that the Bangladesh authorities had turned down a proposal to import rice from Myanmar as a result of scenario within the neighboring nation. However later the cupboard committee in command of the choice modified its thoughts and mentioned it accepted the import of rice by means of a direct buy technique.
In the meantime, the much-discussed Rohingya disaster went into deep freeze. Due to the coup, the long-awaited working committee assembly on Rohingya repatriation between Bangladesh and Myanmar, scheduled to happen on February 5, was deferred. However a Bangladeshi diplomat advised to a neighborhood media outlet a brand new date for the director general-level talks will probably be fastened as soon as the brand new interim navy authorities in Myanmar turns into totally useful. Nevertheless, the international minister has expressed hope concerning the scenario, noting that the Rohingyas had been repatriated twice, in 1978 and 1992, beneath a navy authorities in Myanmar.
Nevertheless, the issue could also be extra difficult than that. Beijing and New Delhi are each competing for affect in Naypyidaw. Clearly China is way forward on this race than India, however the function of the United Nations and worldwide influencers matter too. Bangladesh’s plans to relocate 100 thousand Rohingya refugees to Bhasan Char, an island within the Bay of Bengal, has additionally led to questions amongst many worldwide rights teams, despite the fact that Dhaka has been prepared with solutions.
Past these lie extra contentious points. Whereas Bangladesh doesn’t publicly establish the Tatmadaw as a menace, its resolution to construct a 724-hectare cantonment in Cox’s Bazar close to the Myanmar border and different navy measures – together with equipping border guards with air property together with deploying digital surveillance measures and all-terrain autos on the Myanmar border – all level to its more and more cautious perspective on the subject of the Myanmar navy.
The very fact of the matter is that nonetheless the Bangladesh authorities seeks to ultimately resolve the Rohingya disaster, and deal with relations with its western neighbor extra broadly, it’s one thing that continues to be one thing of a thriller to Bangladeshi public.
Shakil Bin Mushtaq is a Bangladesh-born freelance journalist and analyst.