Bangladesh protests firing at fishermen, demands repatriation of Myanmar citizens

December 30, 2016 OPINION/NEWS

AP photo

 

By

Sheuli Akter

Bangladesh has summoned Ambassador of Myanmar to Bangladesh Myo Myint Than to hand over a strongly worded protest note to him over the latter’s firing at Bangladeshi fishermen at the Bay of Bengal on Tuesday.

The Bangladeshi government also demanded early repatriation of all Myanmar citizens from Bangladesh during the meeting.

Bangladesh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement Thursday said, “Ambassador of Myanmar to Bangladesh Myo Myint Than was called to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to meet Ambassador Kamrul Ahsan, Secretary (Bilateral & Consular).”

During the meeting, Ahsan expressed deep concern at the continued influx of Muslims from the Rakhine State of Myanmar into Bangladesh.

He mentioned that around 50,000 Myanmar citizens took shelter into Bangladesh since 09 October 2016. There are around 300,000 Myanmar nationals who have been staying in Bangladesh for years.

The Secretary (Bilateral & Consular) demanded early repatriation of entire Myanmar population staying in Bangladesh and expressed Bangladesh’s readiness to engage with Myanmar to discuss process and modalities of repatriation with Myanmar.

He also requested the Myanmar government to urgently address the “root cause” of the problem in the Rakhine State so that Rakhine Muslims are not required to desperately seek shelter across the border.

 

Bangladesh also protested the unprovoked attack and firing on a Bangladeshi fishing boat named ‘FV Janiva Khaleda 1’ on 27 December 2016 fishing off the south-east of the Saint Martin’s Island within Bangladesh’s territorial water by a Myanmarese trawler that left four Bangladeshi fishermen seriously injured.

Ahsan mentioned that the Myanmarese trawler with armed people on board took the Bangladeshi fishing boat along with the fishermen including the injured ones to a nearby patrolling Myanmarese Navy vessel.

Myanmar navy personnel seized the belongings of the fishermen and released them after four hours.

Secretary (Bilateral & Consular) demanded appropriate investigation into the matter, bring the responsibles to justice, and sought assurance that the Myanmarese Navy would abstain from attacking innocent fishermen of Bangladesh in future.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sheuli Akter

Sheuli Akter, from Bangladesh, is a Special Correspondent and Editor of NsNewsWire, (Bangladesh’s First Press Newswire). Previously she had worked for Bangladesh’ top news agency, United News of Bangladesh (UNB) and top newspaper (now defunct) The Bangladesh Observer. She also gained an honourable mention in the first ever World Media Summit WMS Awards for ‘Exemplary News Professionals in Developing Countries’, receiving the award in Beijing in January 2015.

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