Bangladesh and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have signed a bilateral document on ‘Route to Mecca’ which will ease visit of Bangladeshi Hajj pilgrims to the kingdom.
Under Route to Mecca service agreement, Hajis (Pilgrims) would be able to complete their immigration in Dhaka prior to their departure to Saudi Arabia.
Bangladesh is the first country with whom Saudi Arabia has signed Route to Mecca service agreement considering "excellent relations" between Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia, said the government.
Another MoU on secirtuy cooperation was also singed between the two countries.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan briefed reporters after a meeting with visiting Deputy Minister of Interior of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Dr Nasser bin Abdulaziz Al Dawood at the Home Ministry on Sunday.
Security cooperation includes capacity building, skills development and exchange of visits between members of the security forces.
The Home Minister said earlier Bangladeshis had to wait in long queues for the immigration process to go to Saudi Arabia for performing Hajj. But from now, the immigration process for going to KSA for Hajj will be completed in Dhaka due to signing ‘Route to Mecca’ MOU .
About Rohingya issue, the Home Minister said that about three lakh Rohingyas are staying in Saudi Arabia and many of them have Bangladeshi passports.
“The Saudi government wanted the renewal of their passports. We have given them assurance to consider the issue. Besides, we also sought the cooperation of the Saudi government to send the Rohingyas back to Myanmar,” he said.