Rohingya repatriation slowed due to COVID-19: FS

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DHAKA, July 5, 2020 (BSS) – Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen today
said repatriation efforts of forcibly displaced Rohingyas have slowed
down amid COVID-19 pandemic while fresh military crackdown in Myanmar
further coiled confidence of Rohingyas over safe return to their place
of origin in Rakhine state.

“The government’s key target is to repatriate Rohingyas safely …
(however) the current situation isn’t helpful,” he told a virtual
discussion hosted by CRI titled “Let’s Talk on Rohingya Response and
COVID-19.”

UNHCR Representative in Bangladesh Steven Corliss, Refugee Relief
and Repatriation Commissioner Mahbub Alam Talukder, Medical Officer
and IPC focal for Leda ITC Sumaya Tasnim and Rohingya representative
Jane Alam took part in the discussion moderated by Showvik Das Tamal.

The foreign secretary said Bangladesh managed Roghingya camps in
Cox’s Bazar quite well in containing coronavirus outbreak. “This is a
good story and must be shared globally,” he said.

Other speakers also praised the Bangladesh government’s early
planning and joint efforts with the UN and humanitarian partners to
limit the transmission of coronavirus in the crowded Rohingya camps.

Only five Rohingyas have so far died due to coronavirus among over
one million Rohingyas at the makeshift camps in Cox’s bazaar.