Bangladesh and the United Nations are likely to sign a formal document on Saturday to find ways for UN engagement in Bhasan Char demonstrating support to the government’s massive investment there to ensure better living for Rohingyas, officials said.
“We’re expecting that the MoU will be signed on Saturday morning if there’s no last-minute change,” a senior official told UNB, mentioning that things are finalised.
However, he did not elaborate further what will be the nature of UN engagement in Bhasan Char and the specific areas of cooperation.
The numerous challenges associated with the temporary hosting of persecuted Rohingyas from Myanmar have compelled the government of Bangladesh to plan the relocation of 100,000 Rohingyas to Bhashan Char, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
So far, nearly 20,000 Rohingyas have moved to Bhasan Char since December last year in a number of groups.
Some 1642 Rohingyas were relocated to Bhashan Char on December 4, 2020, while the second batch, comprising 1,804 Rohingyas, had been transferred from Cox’s Bazar to Bhashan Char on December 29 last year.
On Wednesday, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen said the operational engagement of the UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, in Bhasan Char will begin soon. “Everything is final. It has been done as agreed.”
Recognizing Bangladesh’s massive investment in Bhasan Char, UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh Mia Seppo said there has been, rather, a lot of negative coverage about Bhasan Char and it is important that they have somehow managed to move away from that.
She said they want to be partners in trying to create something so that everybody can live and the conversation that they are having now is important.
Regarding the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to engage in Bhasan Char, Mia said there are protections and humanitarian imperatives and they are obviously looking to support the massive efforts of the government in Bhasan Char.