Swaraj in B'desh stresses on combating terrorism

Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj

According to the United Nations office in Bangladesh, over 600,000 Rohingyas have entered the country since August 25 after the Myanmar Army launched a crackdown on the minority community following a series of attacks on security personnel in Rakhine state.

“It is clear that normalcy will only be restored with the return of the displaced persons to Rakhine state.

Addressing the media after the JCC meeting earlier today, Swaraj said rapid socio-economic and infrastructure development of Rakhine State is the only long term solution to the Rohingya crisis.

Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj who is on a two-day visit to Dhaka for the India-Bangladesh joint commission meeting, an umbrella framework that oversees bilateral cooperation in areas spanning border management and trade to culture, said India had conveyed to Myanmar that the "situation be handled with restraint, keeping in mind the welfare of the population".

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Swaraj appreciated Bangladesh's stand on the Rohingya issue but described the exodus of forcibly displaced people as a "big burden for Bangladesh". Myanmar doesn't recognise Rohingya as an ethnic group and insists that they are Bangladeshi migrants living illegally in the country. "Towards this end, India continues to exert pressure on Myanmar", the BNP leader said quoting the Indian minister.

Swaraj referred to Modi's advice as she called on Bangladeshi prime minister Sheikh Hasina after joining the 4th Bangladesh-India Joint Consultative Commission meeting with her counterpart AH Mahmood Ali. India, for its part, has committed to provide financial and technical assistance for identified projects to be undertaken in Rakhine state in conjunction with the local authorities.

The third JCC meeting was held in New Delhi in 2014.

Both ministers also witnessed the signing of three bilateral documents which include capacity building in SMEs, sale-purchase agreement between Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation and Numaligarh Refinery of India.Ali also handed over the instrument of ratification for the framework agreement on worldwide solar power alliance that Bangladesh ratified in Aug this year. She came here at the invitation of the Bangladesh foreign minister.

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