ASEAN summit must tackle Rohingya crisis

By , 25/04/2020 19:35

has been urged to lobby for Myanmar’s Rohingya refugees at the ASEAN summit. has been urged to lobby Myanmar to ensure Rohingya refugees who have fled to Bangladesh are not forced into a hasty return.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is hosting leaders from the 10-country Association of South East Asian Nations including Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi at a special summit in Sydney this weekend.

An estimated 700,000 Rohingya people from Myanmar’s troubled Rakhine state have poured across the border into Bangladesh refugee camps since last August following a military crackdown.

Among the reported atrocities are villages burned, women raped and babies murdered.

Save the Children n spokesman Mat Tinkler said the summit provided an opportunity for Mr Turnbull and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop to condemn the violence in Myanmar.

The United Nations has dubbed the crisis a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing”.

” has been too cautious in not calling for Myanmar to be held to account for the cause of the crisis, favouring an engagement at all costs approach to diplomacy,” Mr Tinkler said.

should be pushing for a regional response to the crisis, he said.

He urged that Rohingya people should not be forced into a rushed return to Myanmar.

“Instead, they should only return on a voluntary basis, and then, only if conditions are met to ensure their safety and rights are protected,” Mr Tinkler said, adding they must be assured of rights to citizenship, freedom of movement and non-discrimination in accessing essential services to live dignified lives.

Aid groups in the Bangladesh camps are bracing for the upcoming cyclone and monsoon seasons.

An estimated 30,000 people are expected to have their tents destroyed by landslides and 70,000 camp residents are likely to be displaced by flooding.

Comments are closed

Panorama Theme by Themocracy