For a true resolution to the Rohingya crisis, two things need to happen without any compromise.
The first is the voluntary repatriation of the Rohingya to their homeland of Rakhine under the right conditions. This means that they must be taken back as full citizens of Myanmar and the systemic discrimination which has plagued their existence for decades must also be addressed and put to an end.
Secondly, justice must be served. This means that the Myanmar government must own up to the atrocities which were carried out against the Rohingya people, admit to the fact that what the Myanmar army carried out against the Rohingya was nothing short of ethnic cleansing, and work towards punishing the ones responsible for carrying out these horrifying acts of violence, arson, murder, and rape.
As Bangladesh’s Ambassador to the UN Rabab Fatima said at a recent discussion at the UN, the resolution requires the full cooperation of Myanmar. However, at every turn, Myanmar has done the exact opposite in order to filibuster any progress towards finding a solution for the crisis.
Bangladesh has stood as a beacon of humanity during the crisis, going beyond expectations to cater to the needs of more than a million Rohingya within its borders, and it was good to see Bangladesh’s efforts in this regard recognized at the discussion, which had been organized by Bangladesh, Canada, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.
However, commendations will not be enough. There is a limit to how long Bangladesh can sustain the Rohingya community, especially during a worldwide pandemic, and the only way to ensure Myanmar’s cooperation is through increasing pressure from the international community.
Myanmar’s inaction and deceit have gone on long enough. This is one of the worst humanitarian crises in modern history and allowing Myanmar to carry on as usual is simply not an option.